One day at work a song came to my mind, a very beautiful song, one of my favourites. It’s written with such a gentle, soothing melody:
“God’s perfect peace is like a gentle river, that flows within the heart down to the soul…”
But with the song came a deep sadness, because the Christian brother who wrote this and a number of other encouraging songs struggled long & hard against depression. I thought to myself, It’s so not fair. Neither to him, nor to the Church. He was such a gifted songwriter.
“I do unfair.” The reply that popped into my mind shocked me; it seemed to come from Satan himself.
I remembered the words of another song this man wrote: “With my eyes fixed on Jesus I can face another day…” My thoughts went to another brother, too, one who preached the Gospel for years, now has lost the way himself. My heart ached for these men.
It’s so cruelly unfair! I thought
Again it was as if I could hear Satan reply: “I LOVE cruelly unfair.”
I shuddered. Yes, it’s very evident he does.
I’ve seen how Satan loves to deceive parents when their children are young. These parents, who have made a commitment to Christ, get offended or righteously indignant or overly zealous. Off they go on some tangent – they’d say in search of something better – usually a group more to their liking.
Which they never seem find. After years of wandering they realize they have been in the wrong, led astray by the deceiver, and they straggle back to the fold. But the children have been lost along the way; they are now prisoners in the enemy camp and never escape.
The parents may have escaped Satan’s clutches, but now he taunts them with their failure. He reminds them constantly how much fault they bear for the state of their children and in their old age they are plagued with remorse.
George was a prime example. He gave his heart to Christ when he was nine; as a young man he was always religious, quite dogmatic in a lot of things. He meant well, but he had stringent ideas about how God looked at things and spent a lifetime looking for a church that held the same views. (Like most of us, it took him years to learn that his views weren’t always in sync with God.)
At one point he thought he’d found the perfect church, so he moved his family into the community, hoping to join this group. Sad to say, there came a time when something in the church’s doctrines or practices didn’t agree with George and he uprooted his family to go off in search of a church more in line with his ideas.
Some year passed and he went from church to church, never finding one that suited him. He did develop an “unhealthy interest” in his growing daughters. When his wife found out about this hanky-panky she had him committed to a mental institute and divorced him.
By this time she had lost all enthusiasm for religion. She never took her family to church and without a father in their lives–lacking that vital part of parental guidance–the children grew up to make some bad choices. One son died in a car accident (drinking involved), another committed suicide. The two younger ones were into drinking and drugs; at least one of the boys did time in the local jail.
Eventually George returned to that little church he’d left so long ago; by this time he was a broken and confused old man, not knowing anymore what to believe or where to find it. Yet he still remembered the experience he’d had back when he was a boy and in the end he was able to renew his commitment to the Lord. His last months were peaceful, though his biggest concern was the future of his children.
Satan loves to knock us out long enough to steal our innocent children. He’ll drag them through the filth of this world, then hold them up and say, “Look what you’ve done. It’s all because you were so blind when they were young.” And we have to admit it’s too true.
In so many ways, he LOVES cruelly unfair.