Questions and Answers

Snodonia Mines Area from Google Images, Wikipediawhy the hunger and the thirst,
why the war and death and grief?
why the sickness with no cure
and the pain with no relief?

why the child without a home
and the outcast with no friend?
why the family without hope
and the suffering without end?

why the questions without answers
and the life that ends too soon?
what’s the purpose for this madness
God, dare i question you?

when will you enter in?
will you ever intervene?
can’t you simply lift your hand
to end this suffering?

and yet, you turn to me
a question for my ears…
do i not realize
i can answer my own prayers?

can i not lift my hands
to heal the hurt i see?
can i not enter in,
can i not intervene?

you suffered on the cross
and bore our every pain
then gave to us the work
told us go do the same

and i’m beginning now to see
that the answer lies with me
the things i’ve left undone
the pain that i’ve refused to see

the cries that i’ve ignored
the lives that i’ve betrayed
by turning from their eyes
choosing numbness over pain

how can i question God?
how can i complain?
i cast on him the blame
when it is i who bear the shame


poem copyright Jenna Fernandez

Cats, Dogs, and the Scales of Justice

Scales of Justice from Google ImagesI never would have guessed my dog had a dark side. The cat, yeah. That was a no-brainer. She’s haunted our countertops from the time we took her in. But my innocent little puppy bear could do no wrong. Until the day I caught her in action.

Prior to that day, the cat always took the blame for the disappearing food phenomenon in our household. And yet she kept meowing for more. I couldn’t figure out why she was acting so hungry despite regular mealtimes and stolen side-dishes. So I decided to keep vigil. That’s when I found the true culprit.

Thing is, the dog wasn’t even remorseful when I caught her—sneaking food from the cat’s dish. Snatching entire meals from the baby’s highchair tray. Hijacking my daughter’s afternoon snack right out of her hands. No, the dog did not have her tail between her legs when caught red-pawed. She just looked at me with those brown teddy bear eyes, licked her furry lips, and wagged her tail as if to say, “Yum.”

There’s no question I love my dog. BUT I also love my kids and my cat. It wasn’t fair for them to starve while the dog had her fill. I had to take action. If caught food-snatching, she’d get a time-out in her carrier. The child safety gate became a barrier between her and every potential food venue except her own. And I had to keep her separate from the cat and kids during mealtime.

Sometimes we think of God’s judgment as unloving, but nothing could be further from the truth. Because of his love, he hates injustice and in his perfect time will take action to protect the oppressed. Tracing the roots of God’s judgments in Bible times, we find it was always directed toward injustice. How loving would it be to let injustice persist while the poor endure the burden of oppression? On a far smaller scale, how loving would it be for me to let the dog have all the food while the others I love went without?

God is a God of love, and his love is just. In his justice, he will protect the fatherless and the widow. He will stand on behalf of the oppressed. The chains of injustice will not prevail. Because there cannot be love without justice, nor justice without love.

“The Lord executes justice for the oppressed; he gives food to the hungry. The Lord sets the prisoners free. The Lord opens the eyes of the blind; he raises up those who are bowed down; The Lord loves the righteous; he protects the strangers. He supports the fatherless and the widow, but He thwarts the way of the wicked.” (Psalm 146:7-9)

True Love…is JUST (Day 47, #50ShadesOfTrueLove)