There are so many things going on in our world today that sometimes you just lose faith in society or even in God. Our current society idolizes things that bring nothing but pain and sorrow: impossible to achieve beauty, fame and fortune. The Christian way has been all but forgotten in many places. Abortions are normal, same-sex marriage was legalized in all 50 States and US Territories, birth control and contraceptives are accessible to minors everywhere, turning 16 and still being a virgin is frowned upon and don’t get me started on what happens if you haven’t been kissed! Yet we’re still fighting for a better society. Guess what? We’re not only fighting but winning. Obamacare’s aspects that attack religious freedom are under investigation or being overturned, and abortion centers are being closed. Little by little God is winning in our First World disaster. As we see these victories we start to have more faith in God and in our society, we learn that we all make mistakes but that if we work hard enough they can be fixed. Until we see the news.
Ebola is spreading quickly, missionaries are trying to help but falling sick themselves and a cure is nowhere to be found. Of course there are the experimental treatments that are being injected into some infected patients but there are already at least a thousand people dead and more every day. Why would God let something like that happen? That’s a pretty hard question to answer and before I do I want to go a bit northeast of Africa to the Middle East.
The Middle East is known for its instability. Not long ago our own soldiers were fighting for peace there. Maybe they should still be there, maybe they shouldn’t. I’m not one to say. To state briefly what is happening in the Middle East at the moment: Israel was attacked by Hamas, the controlling entity in Gaza, and Israel responded aggressively attacking targets. The result has been horrific. Children are being killed on the streets and hundreds if not thousands of people are dead, soldiers and civilians alike. Now Israel is pulling out. Yet, Hamas’ hatred for the Jews and Israel’s nearly total distrust of Palestinians will continue on for years.
The Middle East is not only known for it’s instability politically, but for its very strong Islamic rules. According to Islam, anyone who converts from Islam is to be killed. No and’s if’s or but’s about it. Of course this only applies to countries that are under Islamic rule. The strictness of its disciplines applies to children as well. Children are currently being beheaded for being Christian. Children, who have committed no crime but believing in someone who loves them intensely and unconditionally. Iraq has been currently killing families in the same way Hitler did: men, women and children who all have one very important thing in common: their faith in a God who loves them. Persecution of Christians is happening aggressively in Syria, Iraq and elsewhere in the region, as well as in parts of Africa.
Back to the main question: why keep faith if it doesn’t seem to be helping anything? Why does God let all these little children be beheaded in the Middle East? Why is Ebola killing so many? Why?
Because God allows us to have free will. Some abuse that freedom; others use it to fight for the rights of those who cannot be heard. Ebola, however, is not the effect of someone’s abuse of free will. It is a test to see if we as human beings can be capable of humbling ourselves and helping others. We must always remain faithful no matter what. Remember the beatitudes?
Blessed are they that suffer persecution for justice’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven (Matt 5:10).
Never forget that you are not alone. With God on your side, who can defeat you?
The evil things in life are the works of Satan and, if I may, I would like to remind you of your Baptismal Vows:
V. Do you reject Satan?
R. I do.
V. And all his works?
R. I do.
V. And all his empty promises?
R. I do.
I would also like to ask each and every one of you to pray for all the victims of war, sickness and persecution. Pray that God will give them the strength to carry on in these hard times.
I realize this article covers a lot of ground yet is very short. The reason for that is the subjects covered are very cruel and at some points, gruesome. Below, however, I am linking to various websites, many Christian, that have covered in more depth the subjects mentioned. I strongly recommend asking a parent’s permission before reading some of them especially if you are 16 or younger. I myself, a 17-year-old, have not been able to bring myself to read all of the articles.
I would also recommend reading either the YouCat or Catechism of the Catholic Church on any questions you may have regarding faith. Personally I prefer the YouCat for a more simple, easy to understand explanation and the CCC for more in-depth but slightly more complicated answer or just more information. As Pope Benedict XVI said,
Study the catechism! This is my heartfelt wish.
Fire of the Spirit Staff
Unfortunately I was unable to find the text of the Youcat online but I did want to share the words of Pope Benedict XVI on it and a link to it in Amazon.
Persecution of Christians:
(Unfortunately this article took some digging to find. Once I got the key words right it popped right up but it is not something that is covered in the mainstream media)
CBS News on Ebola:
Bloomberg, Effects of the outbreak:
~There are so many articles on this topic that all you really have to do is Google and the absolute latest articles concerning it will instantly come up.
I would also like to mention that Life Site News (http://www.lifesitenews.com) always has the latest on the abortion debate and the Pro-Life and Pro-Family loses and victories.