Not As It Should Be

I know that everything God does will last forever; there is no adding to it or taking from it. God works so that people will be in awe of him. Whatever is, has already been, and whatever will be, already is. However, God seeks justice for the persecuted.

I also observed under the sun: there is wickedness at the place of judgment and there is wickedness at the place of righteousness. I said to myself, “God will judge the righteous and the wicked, since there is a time for every activity and every work.” I said to myself, “This happens so that God may test the children of Adam and they may see for themselves that they are like animals.” For the fate of the children of Adam and the fate of animals is the same. As one dies, so dies the other; they all have the same breath. People have no advantage over animals since everything is futile. All are going to the same place; all come from dust, and all return to dust. Who knows if the spirits of the children of Adam go upward and the spirits of animals go downward to the earth? I have seen that there is nothing better than for a person to enjoy his activities because that is his reward. For who can enable him to see what will happen after he dies?
— Ecclesiastes 3:14-22
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It has been a long journey of my eyes being continuously opened to the many ways in which I have participated and still participate in the injustice that has slithered into every nook and cranny in this world. And my heart is broken.

There’s not much to say than what has already been said in the words above, this both/and that knows that God seeks justice for the persecuted and also that everything around us is not right, even the systems that are supposed to be there to actually help bring justice. It doesn’t take long to check the news both globally and locally to see where the fault lines are. Justice for a few is not justice for all, and justice for a few is not justice at all.

In the wise words of my husband, “I don’t have to look farther than my own self to know total depravity is real.”

In our lot, the misuse of power and speculation tempts us all around to turn to such strivings as a means of controlling the madness we see and feel under the sun.
— Zack Eswine

When will God set things right?

Our author here has been through terror and disaster abundant, the teacher leaning into words that even Job has shared alongside him:

Why is light given to one burdened with grief,
and life to those whose existence is bitter,
who wait for death, but it does not come,
and search for it more than for hidden treasure,
who are filled with much joy
and are glad when they reach the grave?
Why is life given to a man whose path is hidden,
whom God has hedged in?
— Job 3:20-23

Still, God does not fear our questions.

The world is not as it should be, we are not as we should be. With eternity emblazoned on our hearts we are seeking and striving, and we are weary. Jesus Christ comes, the One who came to seek and save, asking us to cast these burdens on to Him. This does not excuse us from being a part of the fight here on this ground, but enables us to join hands with those who know heavier burdens. As a friend once shared with me, oddly enough carrying burdens with one another makes both loads lighter, which is God’s physics.

While we wait, we long for our better Eden, we follow the advice of our teacher and preacher, enjoying that which has been given.