Tuesday, December 23, 2008

God's Timing

My daughter bought The Shack as a birthday gift for one of her brothers. I took time to read almost all of it last night. It made me cry.

In the book there is an imaginary meeting between God and a man named Mackenzie at the "shack" where his youngest daughter had been murdered four years earlier. In the conversation, God the Father (known as both Elousia and Papa), God the Son (Jesus) and God the Holy Spirit (Sarayu) reveal that God will, in the end, work out all things for good. In one conversation, Papa says this:
"...The real underlying flaw in your life, Mackenzie, is that you don't think that I am good. If you knew I was good and that everything--the means, the ends, and all the processes of individual lives--is all covered by my goodness, then while you might not always understand what I am doing, you would trust me. But you don't..." p. 126
I have a hard time trusting God sometimes. Like Mackenzie, I rage against the darkness and sin that seem to be in control of the world and of so many lives. But, as the book illustrates, and as the Bible teaches, the time will come when everything will be made right. It's just a matter of trusting that God is indeed all powerful and that He is working things out according to his plan. See, for example, Romans 8 and Second Corinthians 4:8-18,

God will remember his people! God will never abandon or forsake us, even when, from our perspective, it seems that he doesn't remember us at all. One of the wonders of Christmas is remembering how long the people of Israel had to wait for a Savior, and all the sufferings they went through until that glorious night.

Lord, grant me the faith to see you at work, even when it seems that you take so long! As we wait, help us to see your eternal purposes. Teach us to follow you, to only do what you ask us to, and then to be patient as you work all things out for good.


Here are some other quotes from The Shack. You can also read my daughter's comments about it on her blog.
"...Adam chose to go it on his own, as we knew he would, and everything got messed up. But instead of scrapping the whole Creation we rolled up our sleeves and entered into the middle of the mess--that's what we have done in Jesus." p. 99

"...I want you to know there is even more going on than you could imagine or understand, even if I told you..." p. 102

"...it didn't matter whose fault it was... what was truly important here was the love they had for one another and the fullness it brought them." p. 105

"...Relationships are never about power..." p. 106

"...I just can't imagine any final outcome that would justify all this." ... "We're not justifying it. We are redeeming it." p. 127

"...you must gift up your right to decide what is good and evil on your own terms. That is a hard pill to swallow; choosing only to live in me. To do that you must know me enough to trust me and learn to rest in my inherent goodness." p. 136


  1. What a great book The Shack
    Its at Target for $11.00

  2. Wow! Target is advertising on my blog! Just kidding. What did you like about the book?

  3. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sK8gm0C3MCU

    Book review

  4. The comment made at 10:36 tonight is a youtube video critique of The Shack. I haven't studied the book in depth nor do I endorse the critique, but the bit I watched makes sense to me.