The problem of good

The problem of good July 26, 2014

Ann-VoskampThis article from Ann Voskamp is so helpful, and so important. I encourage you to read it all. Ann is a gift to the global Church and she is really onto something in her writings.

So after dinner, she picks coneflowers in the garden.

Cradles the long stems in her apron skirt, carries them up through the picket gate.

And she turns to me on the top step of the porch, holds her apron out to me, all those purple petals — art in an apron.

“Why is there all this loveliness?”

She wants to know . . .

The existence of loveliness everywhere, it begs explaining.

If I raise the problem of evil in this world — shouldn’t she raise higher the greater problem of good? If evil is seeming evidence to eradicate God from our mental landscape, then doesn’t goodness, even in this apron, testify to the gospel truth of God?

How can we behold loveliness — and say that this world looks like this if there were no God?

I don’t know if I have ever thought of this before — the great problem of good on this planet.

The philosopher Augustine had asked two questions of the world:

  • “If there is no God, why is there so much good?
  • If there is a God, why is there so much evil?”

I wonder if I have spent a lifetime murmuring under my breath only the second question?

But why don’t I first get hung up on the first question? The question my girl is bringing in with the flowers — why all this loveliness and where does it come from?

The great problem of good on this planet implies that there is a Great God in heaven.

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