psalm-46I’m sure we have all heard that statement before.

Some of us have perhaps made the statement ourselves.

It can be a frustrating statement to hear. Many people are quick to turn their back on God, to dismiss God outright. They blame God for the problems they have in their life. The blame God for all war, strife, and poverty that is occurring in the world.

Have you ever blamed God for something?

I think we have all experience moments in our lives where our first reaction or impluse was to blame God. However, often on closer inspection to the events we can see that it was not God who wished evil, illness or trouble into our lives. Rather human mistrust and greed most likely played a role. To be sure there are seismic events that are beyond human control that have devastating consequences. The tsunami in the Philippines last year is an example of that. It is hard to find God when such an event occurs, but then look at the response that followed. God is present in our response.

What I have come to realize in life is people are quick to criticise. People are quick to blame others for their problems and when it’s a really big problem people strike out at God. They say I can’t believe in a God who would allow for so much war. They ask where is God when natural disasters strike?

I am a firm believer that God handed this world over to us, asking us to take care of it and each other. What transpires here is God’s will only in so much as it is our will. If we allow injustice, evil, and tyranny to dominate our lives we have only one place to put the blame and that is squarely on our own shoulders.

In listening to people talk I find there is a lack or inability to take personal responsibility for ones actions. Everything is someone or something else’s fault. Inaction in the face of oppression, conflict or disaster is as bad as causing that event in the first place. We are global citizens, we have a global responsibility. That responsibility is not to curse God’s name, but rather to take action and make a difference. To do what God asked of us and be faithful towards creation and neighbour.

In the words of the Psalmist:

“God is our refuge and strength,
a very present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear, though the earth should change,
though the mountains shake in the heart of the sea;
though its waters roar and foam,
though the mountains tremble with its tumult.” – Psalm 46: 1-3