In the book, Lion, Witch, and the Wardrobe, a part of the Chronicles of Narnia, a great lion leads the creatures in defeating the wicked queen. A question is asked about the lion: “Is he safe?” The answer is quite interesting. “Safe?” said Mr. Beaver; “don’t you hear what Mrs. Beaver tells you? Who said anything about safe? ‘Course he isn’t safe. But he’s good. He’s the King, I tell you.”
We want our God to be safe, to be someone we can control, but if you asked me if God is “safe,” I’m afraid I’d have to answer just as Mr. Beaver did. God isn’t safe, but He’s good, and that makes all the difference.
Throughout the Bible, but especially in the Psalms and in the book of Job we find descriptions of God’s power and might. God created the worlds and all the beings in it. God controls the winds and the clouds and moves the mountains. These describe God’s awesome power and strength. We serve a mighty God who is able to do all things, no matter how large, and that power is awesome, and sometimes frightening.
Thinking about the power of God, it is kind of like standing next to a Clydesdale horse and realizing the power that is in the animal, how it could destroy you in a moment if it were not reigned in and trained. Have you ever been in the zoo next to the elephants? All that power and strength and all that size can be frightening, and it should be as that animal could kill you very quickly and with little effort. We respect the power of the animal, knowing that it isn’t safe.
But when we are talking about God, there is another factor at play. God is not only righteous and holy, unable to allow sin in His presence and responding to sin and rebellion with power and might, God is also loving and merciful, wanting to show His mercy on His creation. A little dual-minded? Not at all. You see, it was always God’s will that we, His creation, be in fellowship with Him. He created us, thinking and reasoning beings, to have relationship with him. But sin crept in, and we were separated from God for our own safety.
We were separated from God, sent from the safety and bliss of the Garden into a world where we work and struggle and rejoice, as well. But we were still separated from God. Reading through the Old Testament, we are reminded again and again of the foolishness of the people of God, how they continually turned to idols and false gods of the regions, turning from God. It was in these times that God allowed danger to come on His people, trying to bring them back to Him. He did what was best to save the people from their idolatry.
It was with the coming of Christ, the prototype for the allegorical Aslan, that we found restoration to God. With the sacrifice of Christ, His precious blood was offered for our sins so that we could be forgiven and enter into God’s presence. Jesus paid the price for our sins, served the sentence, and now those who have received that free gift walk with God without fear of His power and strength, knowing that “He is good” and can be trusted.
God is still holy. God’s power is still awesome and frightening, but we know, as well, that God is love. In that love God seeks what is best for us and seeks to shape us and change us into the image of His dear Son, Jesus Christ.
In our current world political situation we are reminded just how powerless we are. When we consider the Ebola epidemic in Africa, the Islamic State crisis in the Middle East, the military struggles in Eastern Europe, and even the problems with drugs and evil in our own communities, our hope can be tested and tried. Yet, in the light of these situations and so many more in our own lives, we are to be reminded once again that God is good and will work all situations to the good for those who call upon His name, to those who love Him (Romans 8:28).
Is God strong? Yes! Is God’s power awesome and frightening? Yes! Is God good? Definitely! I challenge you today, if you don’t know this powerful and good God, to take a moment to talk to Him. There are plenty of pastors in town who would be willing to help you meet God. If you do know God but aren’t sure about God’s plan for you, take some time and pray, seeking the good God who wants to bless you and strengthen you as you serve Him.