I came home this morning to hear about the tragic news of Philip Walsh, coach of the Adelaide Football Club. It was shocking, sudden and completely unexpected. Yet, it wasn't the only shocking thing to happen to me in the previous 24 hours. Only 12-14 hours earlier I had been called and told that I might not be able to graduate from my course in 2015. This was a frustration to me to hear and a shock as I had pinned a lot of my hopes on being able to graduate and look for work. But with both pieces of shocking information you know what I did? I prayed to God. Not because I am strong or because bad news doesn't surprise me but because it did, because I am human and frail, and because I needed to trust that He holds my world when it comes to my future and the futures of all involved in tragedy.
The thing that made the Philip Walsh case worse for me to hear was the fact that it was his own son who was arrested for the murder. It's never great when you hear about a murder - but when it's so public and touches on an area that you have some connection to it feels more personal and deeper. It shocks you to hear. And to think that a son could potentially kill his own father like that hurts me. But I guess it also helps me to understand what it is that God sees and feels when we attack and hurt him with our very actions. With the ways in which people daily turn from Him, choose to live apart from Him.
I guess I wanted to post and say that the little revelation I have is that when shocks and tragedies come, no matter how big or small, it becomes important to me to turn and pray. To choose to worship than to live in the tragedy. To honour God with my actions rather than rising in rebellion. Some might laugh at that idea, 'why would you voice words to a God who surely has other things to do?' they might mock. Well I do it because he is my rock and comforter and my security: the truly unfailing God even when my future or the current day seems lost for a moment.
My favourite film this year is Inside Out to this point. Not because of the colour and imagination or great characters but mainly because of the theme and story. The idea being that all emotions are valuable, not just happiness. In a society which is so dominated by the quest for pleasure it's devastating to many people when pleasure gives way to pain. But in my eyes pain is still useful: it's useful to tell us just how much we need God. The only true response to a broken world is not to hide ourselves in more luxuries but to turn in worship to the only unbreakable thing: the promise that if we confess with our mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in our hearts that God raised him from the dead that we will then be saved (according to Romans 10:9). We must do as it says in 2 Corinthian 4:18 "So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal."
Pain, shock, tragedy, disappointment. They do exist. I have been having plenty of fun in my life. I've had great experiences. But I've also had my share of the disappointments of other people and the world. But despite such things I don't fix my eyes on the current world but on the future eternity and that makes a huge difference in how I respond.
I'll leave you with this video from The Lion King. I know it's not a Christian video but it does express to me a very Christian idea about Christ. He truly lives in me and that leads me to respond to life in the way I do. Have you considered the idea of letting God live in and through you?