Connie looked at her situation yesterday and concluded that God was punishing her.  She knows she has lived — is living — a sinful life, and so it seems just that God would punish her.  Of course, she also knows that she is not likely to change her life, so she is doomed to harsh discipline throughout her lifetime.  Does she think the punishments of this lifetime will absolve her sins, therefore saving her from the eternal punishment?  Yes, probably.  Just like she believes going to church occasionally and doing some good deeds will somehow put God in her debt.

But don’t think I’m ridiculing Connie here.  She is expressing something that almost all Christians have expressed throughout time:  God punishes sin by making terrible things befall the sinner, and he rewards the good people by blessing them with peace and prosperity.  This belief persists despite the records in the Bible to the contrary.  Stories like Job, for instance.

In our humanness, we create gods to worship and appease in order to ensure our prosperity.  Even though we worship the true God, is he allowed to be who he is, or do we make of him an “idol” that responds to us the way we think he should?