The Pastor’s Pen: July 7, 2019

The 30th division of Psalms verse 5 states, “For his anger endureth but a moment; in his favour is life: weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning.” There are times in life when we feel alone and even abandoned. Over the years, I have encountered a number of people who have felt that God has abandoned them and therefore God really must not care about them. Perhaps one of the most difficult things in life is learning how to cope with breaking points, such as unexpected financial challenges or unforeseen illness and death. It is in such times, as much as we might think otherwise, when the random and seemingly capricious nature of God is hard to understand. Many are the times that I have pondered why there seems to be no correlation between living a good life or an evil one when it comes to earthly rewards. Present leadership of our nation offers an excellent example. President Barack Obama was constantly vilified by the right wing of this country. Senator Mitch McConnell has anointed and appointed himself as the gravedigger of American democracy — destroying norms and sending the message that anything sent to him from the Democrats would be “dead on arrival.” President Obama did his very best to get a Supreme Court hearing for Judge Merrick Garland, but McConnell insisted that the hearing was too close to the election and that the electorate should be given the opportunity to decide who would occupy seats on the nation’s highest court through their votes. Mr. Trump’s election insured that Mitch McConnell and the nation’s right wing would have ample opportunity to pack the Court with like minds who could pen their conservative decisions on the most sensitive issues facing the nation. I personally believe Barack Obama was a fine president; he served this nation with distinction and integrity. Three years into his presidency, Donald Trump has demonstrated that he has a penchant for lies, he never apologizes, and he has established an alternate reality and can unashamedly declare of those in Charlottesville, Virginia who resorted to murdering a peaceful protestor and of those protestors who peacefully stood against Right Wing agitators, that there were good and bad on both sides. Mr. Obama, though not perfect, is basically a good man. Donald Trump, on the other hand, a man whose behavior is fundamentally evil, still receives blessings, whether from God or not remains to be seen.

 Matthew 5:45 states, “God maketh His sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.” We don’t know why evil is allowed to run unchecked. Dr. Samuel DeWitt Proctor, former pastor of the Abyssinian Baptist Church of New York City once said, “We do not know why God permits evil but there must be a reason as we know that God is loving and compassionate, and therefore created for us the best world possible.”

There are many questions that will go unanswered in our lifetimes, but the one thing which we can count on in spite of evil’s existence, is God’s ultimate power over evil. God has the whole world in His hands. Psalm 30:5 gives us that blessed assurance that “anger may endure for a moment, weeping for a night, but joy comes in the morning.”