Amal B. Zeidan
The question of where God was during the beating of the Eastern Seaboard causing the destruction of homes and lives being taken seems to be one of interest to many people of different world-views. How can an omniscient God allow such things to happen?
I think the problem here is that we try to invent our own answers to questions like these and out of our limited minds try to delineate the catastrophes of this world, recent and historic. I find huge fault in that, especially when mankind has been wrong about life, the world and human beings numerous times, although we have come quite far. I’m not saying that’s bad, I’m saying instead of looking in the mirror for an answer, we should look elsewhere and have the same hope and faith that scientists and experimentalists have when looking for evidence to base a belief upon and to arrive at a conclusion to which we may or may not understand. The truth about life does not require recognition from us for it to be true. The truth prevails whether it is agreed with, ignored or opposed.
If God exists and sees all, then he must have seen the hurricane. And if God is who he says he is, then he has the power to stop it, but why didn’t he? Does he have an ultimate plan for us? Can anything good come from such disasters? Where was God? Some students around the Post campus have their own ideas.
Junior Nutrition major, Lisa Samuels, isn’t sure where God was, “but if there is [a God] I think he makes things happen for a reason. It may sound harsh, but I think that people are very resilient and can come out from things like this stronger than ever.” Considering this natural disaster, Samuels states, “I honestly think it’s Mother Nature’s way of telling us we need to take a look at the way we are currently doing things… like disrupting and damaging our environment… and try to change it.” Samuels was without heat and power for 17 days. She believes the only good thing that came out of this tragedy is how everyone united and began to rebuild what so many have lost, “It’s a powerful thing to experience.” Divia Mary James, sophomore Biology major, says, “Life isn’t perfect. We don’t know much, but now living without electric, we can realize what life is really about. We can see the true value of heat, hot water and even the refrigerator.” James was without electric and heat for 14 days due to Superstorm Sandy. She says, “I didn’t even know my neighbors before the storm, all of a sudden we were united.” Continuing Nutrition major, Jenna Sager, questions how theists are so sure that God has a plan for everything, or even the existence of God, “How do they know?” Sager also believes one must have “an understanding of science to give an explanation for natural disasters, or maybe it’s beyond science.” Sager was without heat and electric for 10 days. She says that even if something good came out of the Sandy and Nor’easter chaos, it would not compensate for the damages.
It is my belief that God is the creator of a once perfect world. Mankind fell and there began the separation between God and man. It is true, and proven that God has the power to create such natural disasters. For instance, the flood in Noah’s time, the plagues of Egypt or even the storm in Jonah’s time were all sent by God. But if we look at these situations closely, we can see that God knew what he was doing and had a plan the whole time. But even if this was not the case, which I don’t believe it to be; nature can have its own mind at times. In the time of Elijah, there was a great wind, but God was not the wind, then there came a great earthquake but God was not the earthquake. Here we can see how God had nothing to do with the wind or the earthquake.
I’m not saying Sandy and the Nor’easter were sent by God or that they weren’t. I’m not afraid to say I don’t know. I’m also not afraid to say that I trust God in whatever he does and whatever he allows to happen. This is not to be mistaken with blind faith. Through my short time of being a believer, I have been convinced, based upon the evidence put in front of me that God knows what he is doing, better than how we feel or what we think about it.
The lesson to possibly be learned can maybe be about our priorities and what we value in our lives. The truth is, no matter how much money we have or how powerful we maybe, we can still lose it all very quickly. We are not even promised tomorrow, but we hope and live like we are going to be around for a long time. We can’t keep allowing the illusions of the world to mask the truth of life and what must be valued the most. Love, honor, kindness, faith and most importantly God, in my opinion, are what we should keep our focus on. Like the wind, these things are invisible, but they are more real than anything we can see.