Recently we had one of our senior members talk to us about his World War 2 experiences. He explained how he felt two days after his eighteenth birthday receiving a letter telling him he had been selected for what seemed like was going to be a special assignment. After leaving his home in the country and travelling to Sydney he realized he had been drafted into the Army! He recounted some of the funnier incidents along the way in the transformation of a collective of young immature men into a cohesive group of Servicemen working together and obeying orders. On occasions, he recounted, they had only one set of clothes which they were wearing, but were told to “change their clothes every day”, which may have meant wearing their shirt inside out every second day, changing socks from one foot to the other, wearing singlets back the front and so on. He shared with us the personal frustration of not being able to understand why all these things were happening and the only way to carry on often was to stop trying o understand! How did one distance the actions which they were required to perform from their own personal repugnance of what they were doing?
No doubt many have heard similar stories, and been faced with the same imponderable questions about life and human behavior. Some may have shared the same experiences. But the interesting thing about this presentation was that this was the first time our friend had actually felt the confidence to openly talk about these events. Sixty years of inward turmoil based on low self-confidence had followed his experiences, and only now did he gain the strength to share his feelings. Many who have come through this path have been able to readjust to a “normal” lifestyle in different ways, but there appear to be a lot who still carry a legacy from their earlier life experiences.
When people came to face these big questions in life the Blame Game is often played. People will ask, “Why does God allow these things to happen?” What these people do not take into account is that as well as a God there is a Devil. It is the effects of the Devil that brings about the undesirable events in the World. And in choosing not to follow God’s ways people are actually siding with the Devil. Now we could have great philosophical discussions about what is meant by God and by the Devil, but generically these forces represent what is for the long-term common good and what is against it respectively.
Along with most Religions, Christians believe that our present existence is part of a continuum of life given us by God, and accept that in our present condition we cannot understand all the why’s and wherefore’s of human behavior and the consequences of our actions. However we do believe that behind it all is a Master Plan which one day we will understand. For Christians an outline of this Plan is presented for us in that Instruction Book for Life – the Bible. And it is in the Bible that we see the story of God our Creator sending His Son to be an ambassador to reconcile the World to Himself. This is the story of Easter – how Jesus Christ gave His life that those who believe in Him might have life everlasting.
It all sounds so simple and yet so inexplicable, but those who hold to this explanation of why the World is like it is find within themselves with an inward peace which allows them to accept conditions around them and to want to share their belief with others. Like our friend, many are hurting on the inside, many have bottled things up inside themselves for many years and have difficulty expressing how they feel. If you have never confronted the Christian Message of the crucified and resurrected Christ as a starting point to understand the World around you, then maybe this Easter might be a good time to take up this challenge.