– Peter Kreeft
You have to remember that when God created the world, it was perfect. In fact, when he was creating the animals and a lot of the earth’s other features, he kept saying “It was good.” It means that everything was perfect. There was no death.
When Adam and Eve sinned, besides being kicked out of Eden, God cursed the earth. What does this mean?
To eat, we have to work. To succeed, we often have to go through several failures. To top it all off, death entered the picture. In other words, we’ve gone from a situation where we would just basically sit around all day and not have to work and food will appear to sweating and struggling for our daily bread. This is all a consequence of sin.
I don’t think I need me to remind you that life can be quite rough. These challenges of daily living, regardless of their form, all flow back from original sin. And as disturbing as all these may be and as discouraging as the challenges may seem, there is good news.
If you read the Bible closely, you will notice that God cursed the earth not because he wanted to punish man, but it’s actually a blessing to man. In fact, certain translations said God cursed the earth for the benefit of man.
You might be scratching your head. How can introducing all these challenges and daily ordeals be a blessing to man? Well, the blessing is when you realize that difficulties are opportunities for faith. The fact that there is death, suffering, disease, and degeneration gives us an opportunity to welcome the antidote to that which is Jesus Christ. The fact that we don’t know where our next dollar will come from is an invitation to trust in God on a day-to-day and moment-by-moment basis.
This is the real opportunity. This is the blessing behind the challenge. Above all else, what God is saying through the daily challenges that he sends our way is that I am always here if you allow yourself to see me. God is everywhere. God is ready, willing, and able to bless us if we let him.
And the first step to do that is to learn to trust him in a day to day basis. The less we worry, the less we rely on our human strength, and the more we trust in him, the easier it is for us to live a life worth living. This in of itself is the biggest blessing in all the world.
Faith and trust go hand in hand. I mean, it’s easy to say I have faith, but if it’s not reflected in how much I trust Jesus, it’s really an empty faith. It’s an intellectual faith. It’s an orthodox form of faith. Real faith is reflected by how you live your life. Real faith is reflected by your attitude and how you deal with challenges.
By cursing the earth, God actually blessed man because he gave us an opportunity to trust in him more. Keep this in mind because it’s very easy to look at the challenges and feel crushed by how big our problems are.
Regardless of how imposing our challenges may be, God is infinitely bigger. After all, we are talking about the power that spoke the universe into being. I’m not talking about rolling up his sleeves and breaking a sweat. We’re talking about somebody who spoke the universe into being by mere words. That’s how powerful God is. And you mean to tell yourself that your worries, your rent, your lack of money, your cancer, and your bad relationships are bigger than that power? Are you kidding me? Learn to find the blessing in God’s cursed earth today.