Why? | Mark’s Remarks

As humans, we are an interesting lot. No matter how hard we try, we can often revert back to our selfish selves at any given moment. Even if we try not to be selfish, we are.

We don’t like surprises. Regardless of how unrealistic it is, we want to know the future.  Subconsciously, we want the future to be laid out and viewable; a clear path we can plan for. We want to control things; we want to tell everyone what to do. We want our way in all things.

In addition to all those crazy wants and expectations, we always want to know the answer to the question we ask all day long: Why? We need reasons!  If something happens, we want to know why it happened or, better yet, who made it happen.

Someone once said life is just a series of problems with moments of joy in between. I’d guess most of us would agree, even if the problems are small ones.

When the really big things happen to us, our first inclination is to ask why and immediately find out who caused it.  There must be someone to blame this whole problem for. I suppose it makes us feel better to blame someone.

When my daughter was diagnosed with brain cancer as an infant, we certainly asked that question many times. I remember driving to the hospital after talking to my wife, yelling and crying out to God.  “Why? Why would a little baby have to have brain cancer? What is the purpose?”

I suppose I wanted to blame someone. Being an obsessive drinker of Diet Coke at the time, I even questioned that maybe that had caused my daughter’s illness. How silly and, actually, how stupid that was. But again, I wanted to find the blame.

Thank goodness we are only human. We were created in God’s image, but he created us as earthly beings that had the power to choose. He created us to have fellowship with Him.  It’s amazing when you think of how intricately we were designed by the hand of God.  How everything works, how everything fits. Yes, amazing.

But there is still that great need to know why. Why do bad things happen to good people?  I mean, that question right there prompts many people to question the very existence of God.  “Why did 9/11 happen? Why did such a good person get cancer?

Why did innocent people die? Why did someone who has done nothing but good lose their life’s savings? On and on it goes.

If I had a dime for every time I asked why, well, I’d have a heck of a lot of dimes. I still don’t understand some of the things that have happened in life, and I certainly still have the curiosity.

But did you ever think maybe God doesn’t want us to know some things? Do you ever think that maybe God wants us to see the big picture, or look back on things and then know why?  Did you ever think God wants us to just have faith in Him rather than know everything in advance and have every question answered? It’s hard for me to remember that sometimes and it’s amazing how God will speak to me through other people or through His word.

One day, not too long ago, I heard the words of a sermon on the radio. I tuned in a little late and there wasn’t much left of the sermon. The message was still there, loud and clear, though. There are a lot of things we won’t know this side of heaven. We won’t know the answers to the “whys” of this world.  That’s just the way it is.

And really, when you think about it, aren’t you glad we don’t know everything?

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Mark Tullis

Mark is a 25-year veteran teacher teaching in Columbia. Originally from Fairfield, Mark is married with four children. He enjoys reading, writing, and spending time with his family, and has been involved in various aspects of professional and community theater for many years and enjoys appearing in local productions. Mark has also written a "slice of life" style column for the Republic-Times since 2007.
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