This Weekend @ Connexus | March 14, 2010

This weekend we start a brand new series that, honestly, has been the hardest one I’ve ever had to write. We’re tackling the hardest subject I know of over five messages with a series called "Why God Says No". One of the most troubling questions of faith is why bad things happen to good people. If God is so powerful, why doesn’t he stop bad things from happening? If God is loving, why does life unfold with as much heartache as it does? In this series, we’ll look at why God says no, and we’ll uncover a surprising answer to a question that haunts believers and non believers alike – why does God say no?

This is a great series to invite your friends to: skeptics, people who have been disappointed in God, people who have walked away from the Christian faith and people who are hanging on by a thread. We can’t promise we’ll resolve every issue but we can promise we’ll engage the subject honestly, truthfully and in a way that helps share what God’s word says about why God says no.

This series kicks off this weekend in Barrie and next weekend in Orillia.

SPRING FORWARD this weekend! Dont forget to switch your clocks ahead!

Barrie

Why God Says No | Part One: If God Would Only…
We all have ideas about what should happen in life. Most of us can call a flawless post game analysis. And we’ve all done that to God. We would handle things differently if we were in charge. So why doesn’t God do things our way? Why can’t he see things the way we see them and do what simply seems best? The answer might surprise you.

Service Times: 8:30-9:40 am & 10:00-11:10 am | Galaxy Theaters Barrie 72 Commerce Park Dr.


Orillia

Bigger Than You
We all want to live a life of purpose, but trying to find a purpose that’s actually fulfilling can be difficult. So we acquire – we acquire a career, possessions, hobbies, experiences, faith and even friends and family. Jesus taught that ultimate satisfaction doesn’t come from acquiring all we want or need – but from something much bigger than that.

Service Times: 8:30-9:40 am & 10:00-11:10 am | Galaxy Theaters Orillia 865 West Ridge Blvd.

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5 Comments

  1. Theresa Haskins says, March 12, 2010 at 9:47 am

    Carey,

    I think one of the hardest words I have ever tried to figure out is sovereignty. I must admit, I still don’t understand it – but was forced to really consider it when I listen to an book on CD that claimed God CONTROLLED/CREATED bad things (rather than “allowing” them). I have really struggled with that the past couple of months! Together with reading the book of Job, your series is PERFECT timing for me! I can’t wait to listen to every wise word that comes from your mouth (please don’t feel pressure – I really think you’re cool!).

    I will be praying for you Sunday morning!

  2. Justsomegirl says, April 18, 2010 at 10:35 am

    Carey, I do believe that God uses painful situations for good and that he is always there with us. And all the stuff you said during this series. However, what I struggle with is – what if God has miscalculated? And that he has given you a burden that is too hard to bear? Lots of Christians say he doesn’t do that, that God only gives you burdens that you can bear. But I don’t think that is always true. What about when people get so depressed by their circumstance that God refuses to change, that they a) give up on God; b) become ineffectual for the Kingdom for months, years or life; or c) slip into a dark depression. And I’ve seen all of these things happen to various good and faithful people. Some triumph over their circumstances and we talk about and celebrate that (and rightly so) but the church doesn’t talk so much about those who don’t make it, who feel crushed by their circumstances and God’s no. That is what I wonder about. Where is God then – when people are so crushed by circumstance that they can’t get up again? Why does God allow heavier burdens than some can bear? Why does he sometimes allow his people to get so crushed beyond their strength and ability to cope?

    • carey says, April 18, 2010 at 4:40 pm

      That’s a great point, and a great question. Like the series suggests, there’s no easy answer. I do have a question though: do you think God gives us more than we can bear, or do you think freedom of choice impacts this in some way?

      For example, when it got dark for me (as I shared in Part 5 of Why God Says No), there were moments where I was sure it was more than I could bear. I’m not saying others don’t have it worse…I’m sure they do. All I know is that it felt like that for me. For whatever reason, both God’s grace and my decision not to quit seemed to help turn things away. Do you think that maybe our decision to continue on and not quit is a factor? Sometimes I think the difference between Peter and Judas (who both betrayed Jesus) is that Peter stayed around long enough to be forgiven.

      It’s a great question – what do others think? (Thanks for asking it).

  3. Justsomegirl says, April 20, 2010 at 10:56 am

    Well, in this case, it is a health / disease issue so freedom of choice is not a factor. So, yes, it does feel like God sometimes unfairly gives burdens that are too hard to bear. I guess it comes back to what you said in the sermon – when terrible circumstances happens, especially when they happen to you, as opposed to you causing them yourself, do you still think God is good? First I didn’t know God, then I loved him and thought he was amazing (even when I had this burden), but now that it has been so long and so heavy and so hopeless, I’m not so sure any more about God. I’ll keep praying and hoping.

  4. Yvonne Gravel says, April 20, 2010 at 5:13 pm

    Nietzsche said, “What doesn’t kill you, makes you stronger.” I think there’s truth to that. I’ve never had a health issue but years ago I sat with my husband (34 Years old) as he died of leukemia. It was hard. I was in my 20s and we had two sons, aged 2 and 1. He died just 4 months after diagnosis despite a lot of prayer and faith. I’d like to write that God did amazing things following that but the truth is that what followed were some really hard years and I too began to wonder about God. Where was He? Why hadn’t He healed when we asked? What was the point of this? Our income fell by 75%. I sold the house and moved into a friend’s modified basement. Our bedrooms didn’t have windows. It felt like a dungeon. We had house insurance but the insurance company denied my claim. Just what a young, grieving widow with two young kids living in a basement needs, eh? What followed was a year of phone calls, research, tracking down an employee that had left the company…in other words, a lot of work. Did I mention that basement was in Quebec? The family decided on a new rule in the house – French only. Not only were things bad but now I couldn’t even speak my native language. I had to learn another one. I felt like this was way too heavy. I probably would have thrown myself off a bridge except that I was too busy changing diapers, wiping snotty noses, trying to figure out an even tighter budget and trying desperately to believe that God was in this somehow. Even though things were bad, they got worse. Eight months after making the move to the basement, my oldest son, then 3, had a major seizure. It wasn’t the febrile kind. It lasted for more than half an hour. When the doctors (all speaking in French) couldn’t get him out of it, they wheeled him into a room for an emergency CAT scan. Just after he got in, the emergency light and siren went off and three nurses RAN in. I was in tears. He made it out of the seizure and stayed in the hospital for four days hooked up to a lot of the same machines his dad had been hooked up to while in ICU. It was like bad deja vu. I was told to go to CHEO and take the epilepsy course. I did and for the next year lived in fear that another seizure would happen. My boys weren’t the kind of kids that sat at the table and coloured. If there was water, they jumped in. If there were rocks, they climbed. It was horrible living in fear of another big seizure.

    In the end, the next seizure never came. My fight with the insurance company miraculously proved successful. Somehow we lived with that Francophone family for almost 4 years and we all survived to tell the tale (barely but we did). I did learn to speak French and even to read and write it a bit. I invested the money I got though I knew nothing about investing and did alright.

    Life was horrible for a long time. I kept looking to the horizon hoping a Prince Charming would come and rescue me from it all. That didn’t happen. What did happen was I crossed a lot of foreign bridges and made it to the other side with my sanity, my family and my finances intact. Circumstances didn’t really get better but I got stronger. Now when things go wrong I don’t panic like I used to. I acknowledge it and then roll up my sleeves and get to work doing what I can to make things better. I no longer look for someone to rescue me. I do all that I can and I do it with a lot more confidence than I used to. I’ve made it through some tough years so I don’t worry so much about the future like before. I know I’ll make it through whatever comes my way.

    My kids are older now and doing OK. They went through the hard years with me and I think they have a better understanding than most concerning finances and work. They don’t expect things to be handed to them. They know they have to work to make things happen.

    I still wonder about those years but they didn’t kill me. They made me stronger, more competent, with a better perspective.

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