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Julius schenk Posts

If God is so good why does life suck?

(Recently i joined Alpha and these were some questions, i didn’t shove my opinion down throats at the time but will now, that’s what my blog is for!!)

A lot of people, both Christians and not struggle with this. If God is all love and so nice and powerful why is life so awful. I think the better question is how much of it is caused by God.

Can God really be blamed when a young family is killed in a car accident?

He didn’t invent cars , drunk drivers, iphones and it was their free-will to drive on that day. He could have stopped it, but should he stop all accidents, just Christians? Just those who pray for a safe journey. I have seen the movie “Minority report” in it, they stop criminals based on crimes they will do in the future. Would you want to be stopped from a crime before you did it? I think most people want the chance not to be shit.

What about war and murder?

Their is actual a commandment “though shall not kill,” it’s actually a rule, don’t kill, so how can God be blamed if we do? Because he gave us free will? we are Gods children not his slaves. I’m sure he looks down at what we do to each other and is horrified. I am sure he hates when people suffer and die, with no need. Just because you know what will happen, doesn’t mean, you approve of it.

Why are we here?

One girl asked “why are we here,” all seems meaningless to her. I think humans are here for two reasons.1: to prove to god he wants us in heaven 2: To love and be loved.

Modern humans are pretty self centered and I assume a lot of people think they are here to enjoy life and that is all. They may say enjoy life while not hurting anyone, but that’s just not actively hurting them, not helping much.

It’s weird to think how would you behave if this was all a test to see if God will let you into heaven. He tested Job and Jesus had a life of suffering and rejection, God certainly didn’t make him super lucky, or powerful. I believe we are saved from grace not our good work, because again people get carried away with rules and thinking they are awesome, but I also think we are here on earth to make other people happy.

Why is life good for me, but sh*t for others?

It is clear being poor is awful and the virus and lock down has hit the poor harder by far. If you have four kids in a flat with no garden it sucks. Then ad worry about food and education. How do you teach from home when you have one computer between four? But is this God’s fault? This is human suffering caused by poverty and greed. IBM/Intel/Apple/Amazon could afford to give every child a computer when they hit high school, but why would they. People may say, you can’t help everyone and everything, but i think you can try.

If we are made in Gods image why are we evil?

I’m not evil and I know that from a young age I had a real sense of right and wrong, middle class guilt. Now I see it was the holy spirit guiding me but subtly. What part of us is gods’ image? Not the way we look. I think we look as we need to survive on earth. Our free will or immortal soul. To quote that dragon from Skyrim “What is better – to be born good, or to overcome your evil nature through great effort?”

Jesus was all good but he had free-will and could have been all bad. Next time your going to blame God about things, think, did he actually do this? Knowing what will happen is far from causing it.

Why doesn’t God destroy the Devil?

I struggle with this and i have written this ten times and deleted it. Damn this is good for clarity. I think i have gotten there. 1. It’s doing the job it was built for. If he knew what would happen by making this awesome angel, he knew he would go on tempting people like Job, Jesus, you and me. Temptation is ok, God wants to see if we can handle it. Jesus himself was tested, why shouldn’t we be?

2. Maybe he loves him a bit. I am assume every maker loves the creation even if it’s shit. Lucifer was called the Morning star, meant to be so beautiful he turned vain. Also we’re imperfect and dodgy creations and we’d be pretty upset if God destroyed us, even slugs need love.

I like to ramble as you can tell, so please send me message and i’ll try give you what i think.

Reasons i Believe in God

This is more for myself and not to convince anyone. I don’t really think anyone can be argued into faith, but this is to help remind me when i doubt.

1. Human are too amazing

While people get carried away with how evil and horrid some of us can be. We are seriously amazing. When i think of people that are incredible signers, can play an instrument, do brain surgery and dance. I think who we are 94% the same DNA as a monkey and the difference is amazing, why? in my mind it’s God. When i see things like this i am like. Damn are we not heavenly?

2. The world is too amazing

There are more bugs in a handful of dirt in your backyard than people in London. The world works perfectly. You watch a documentary by Sir David and you see wow we haven’t died all this time because of millions of Krill that eat CO2. Everything just works. For me God is in the wind, in the power of the sea and the sun. I don’t get fooled and worship the creation but i care a lot more about nature than a new BMW. I found God sitting on a beach in Mexico, when i finally said to myself “ok, this is just too good,”

3. My wife is too perfect/love it too good

One of the things i like a lot and is very meaningful to me is the scripture “he loved you before, you loved him,” I feel like this is very true for me. While i was nice enough in my 30’s i was also drinking every night, sleeping around and was lonely as. I was so miserable even though on the surface i had it all. Well paid job, apartment in the city, lucky with women.

My wife is a Brit and the chances we would meet was 1 to a million. We meet when i was the host of a meet-up group and i was so un-cool it was a miracle she liked me. I like to imagine we were a project in the angel division of meet cute and set-ups and they moved us together. I am so insanely happy with her and we’ve been together for more than five years. We found God together. Love is awesome. Honestly, if you’re lonely become a christian, we all have lovely partners.

4. Probability/ Goldie locks

If the earth was a fraction closer to the sun we would be dead. Compare the difference between the Antarctic and Africa. Then if the earth was bigger or smaller, gravity would change. Imagine a world where we were crushed by gravity? then the oxygen level. Bees evolved at the same time as flowers? All told the chance of life is like a trillion to one.

It almost as if someone helped us along? and guided our creation. Now many people say life had billions of years of trial and error and it’s all chance. Maybe that could be true if life existed anywhere and any form at all. There is nothing out there, there is not some weird worm on the moon, all white and living off dirt. There is nothing, except us.

5. Trust

If your mother tells you as a child a pan of water is hot, do you draw your hand back and trust her? or do you shove your hand in and find out? one option is getting burned but finding the truth, the other is she was holding you back from the joy of touching cold water. What a b**tch.

The gospels tell me about jesus, millions of other people have experienced it. So what they are all lying? or they are all mistaken? I trust my friends and family to want the best for me, so i believe.

Conclusion

When it comes to belief i think one thing matters most of all. Yes, Jesus is real, and Yes, he was raised from the dead, it is all true. The question is, will i be a better person if i believe? The answer is yes. Every week i go to church online. We pray for others, we talk about giving to others. “Love your neighbor as yourself,” is the central tenant of faith. Yes ,you can do it alone. but what is the harm in being reminded to be good?

This was written for me, but it you’d like to learn more about what we believe in 2020, do check out Alpha, it’s via Zoom now and you can just shut the laptop if you hate it.

Alpha via Zoom

Recently i did the 11 week Alpha course via Zoom and i decided to write a bit about my experience. I know in Lock-down a few of us can’t be involved in the groups we used to and some might be think of doing an online Alpha.

What is Alpha?

Alpha is an interactive course of videos and discussions ranging in various christian topics from “is god real”, “what is evil” and many aspects of faith. From my course i’d say about 70% of people were Christians but this seemed high and they work hard to make everyone feel welcome. It is clear the idea is to encourage non-christian to join, with an open mind and be given a view of what modern Christians think.

Why did i join?

I have been a Christian for five year or so and i would describe myself as very cynical and also quite questioning. I wanted to join because i wanted to see what is was like and also to see if i could answer some questions i had. I realize it is run by HGB church and Nicky Gumball there head guy features a lot in the videos. I go to Hillsong and won’t be changing but it was good to see that other churches are cool too.

My experience

Other people might have a different experience, but this is my blog and i write what i want. I loved the experience and had two things i wanted to report. One, i found out my faith was a lot stronger than i thought. Two, the social aspect of meeting other youngish and cool Christians was great.

I am an odd guy, who loves fantasy and punk rock. Yet i saw that while i like to think about angels flying around in space and i ask myself what does god look like. I think maybe like the milky way. It’s not weak faith, i just like to think of these things. I always thought of strong faith as blind faith, but it’s not. I can believe and also want to know if angels sleep.

Christian friends

I am an Aussie in the UK and i haven’t made too many friends other than my wife. So the Alpha group was great for the social side. You don’t talk much, but i think if someone prays for you it does make you close. I think often in this modern world we don’t talk often about our faith. One girl said she worked in the NHS which was very secular, so it was nice to be able to talk freely about what is central to you.

Now the course has finished, we are still going to meet and talk. I personally like Zoom and am getting more and more used to it. I feel people of the “Covid generation” will always be more likely to use video calls and work from home.

Who Should do Alpha?

I think any non-christian who wants to know more about it, and has been drawn to it. It is a great way to find out more, but be aware they will pray for you. I also think people like me gain from it. So if you have questions, you should join. Course details can be found here. Do Alpha online.

Green Homes grant UK

Many years ago (like ten) Australia had this program where they would give a company $3,000 to put insulation in your house. It too was during an economic downturn and did get a lot of people working. It got cancelled though as a few people died in hot QLD rooves.

Now the UK is at it with the “Green homes grant” launched sept 2020 and i for one bloody love it. Here are the details.

Primary measures: up to £5,000

Insulation measures

The following insulation measures are covered by the voucher:

  • solid wall
  • under floor
  • cavity wall
  • loft
  • flat roof
  • room in roof
  • insulating a park home

Low carbon heat measures

The following low carbon heating measures are covered by the voucher:

  • air or ground source heat pump
  • solar thermal (liquid filled flat plate or evacuated tube collectors)
  • biomass boilers

Secondary measures up to £5,000

  • draught proofing
  • double/triple glazing (where replacing single glazed windows)
  • secondary glazing (in addition to single glazing)
  • external energy efficient doors (replacing single glazed or solid doors installed before 2002)
  • heating controls
  • hot water tank thermostats and insulation

The amount you get towards the cost of secondary measures cannot exceed the amount you get for primary measures, so spend the full £5,000.

Fine Print:

Now if you are low income and on befits you can get 100% covered if not 80% which is great still. try this, you get £5,000 worth of insulation, roof, walls, floor, all eco-friendly.

Then you get $5,000 in double glazed windows, new doors, draft proofing. If you spent all, your bill would be £2,000 out of pocket. The best outcome is you have reduced your household carbon footprint. You electric bill will drop and you’ve increased the value of your house.

Apply:

You can apply for the voucher at the website and applications are open at the end of sept. Right now it is un-clear what it covers in terms of dual invoicing and an energy audit. What would be best would be to hire an energy specialist and they organise it all. Still here are a few good options for eco-friendly insulation.

Warmcel

Made from 100% recycled paper. Warmcel is a cellose based blowing in insulation. They give training to the installers and because it’s a hose and blown in they can do hard to reach places like floors and walls. They have a nation wide network of installers.

https://www.warmcel.co.uk/warmcel/installers

SprayFoam:

This is a foam that expand like that stuff in a can. It claims to be eco because it’s harmless chemicals but i’m not sure. It here an option.

https://www.sprayfoam.co.uk

Thermofleece:

I don’t know if the voucher covers supplies to d.i.y it might, or this company might start to offer an instillation service, or your installer might be able to buy from them. If you want some insulation made for 100% british sheep wool, here it is. Looks nice.

https://www.thermafleece.com/

Solar thermal:

If you have a good level of insulation already, solar can be a great idea. In the UK it’s not like to remove your energy bill but it can lower it a lot. Also it can increase the value of your home, lower your energy bill and lower your carbon footprint. If you can get a solar battery included that is great.

www.https://jpsrenewableenergy.co.uk/

When the program is launched in full i will be applying for it and thus i will update this.