We are taught from the beginning that God is perfect and that everything God does was and is good.
Now, don’t get me wrong. I love God. I have issues with religion and religious people (funny, that, seeing as how I am a Christian pastor!) but I love God.
But this perfection thing…I wonder.
Why? Because of all of the imperfections I see in human beings. When babies are born with cleft palates, or with their intestines on the outside of their bodies, or with no brain, or no heart, I wonder. Would a perfect God be capable of an imperfect creation?
I think about the propensity of people to become addicted. People are addicted to all kinds of things, from sex to gambling to video games …not to mention alcohol and drugs. I find myself wondering what went wrong in the process of creation. If God is perfect, then what? Is it God’s prerogative to create imperfect human beings? I mean, doesn’t it seem that a perfect God would be able to wire this magnificent species called homo sapiens in such a way that we all came out perfect …and not inclined to fall into addiction?
This is outside the scope of Free Will. We have not an iota of say while we are in the process of “becoming.” I know heredity plays a part, meaning that one’s genetic makeup cannot be ignored. But heredity is only part of the answer. And I know environment plays a part. The environment of the woman who bears the egg that is fertilized by the man mixes with his environmental particularities.
But isn’t God supposed to be able to trump all of that? Does the perfect God not want to duplicate perfection as much as divinely possible?
This discussion leads me to theodicy, that discipline which tries to help humans understand this God. If God is good, then why do bad things happen to good people? Why did the 9 year old girl and five others die in Tucson, victims of a crazed gunman? Is God all good and all powerful? If God is good, then, in light of the “imperfections of creation” and other phenomena, such as the Tucson shooting, is God not all powerful? Or is God all powerful, but not really all good?
I have struggled enough with these questions over the years to gratefully say that in spite of the lack of perfection in creation, I still believe God is both all good and all powerful. I have also decided, though, that God is incomprehensible. Whoever wrote that God’s ways are as far from ours as the east is from the west was on point.
I will never “get” God.
But I am glad I have God, in spite of the fact that I look around sometimes, and say, “God, what?”
That’s a very personal candid observation.