L in the Southeast

L in the Southeast
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Atlanta, Georgia, United States
Birthday
November 04
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Retired PR Director
Bio
I am a retired Public Relations professional who now writes purely for fun and catharsis. I covered most of my memoir-type pieces in the first three years here. Lately I have dabbled in politics, current affairs, pop culture and movie reviews. Life is my muse.

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MARCH 5, 2012 12:25PM

Was That You, God?

Rate: 45 Flag

  pekin-indiana-tornado-march-2nd-2012

Your devoted fans in the Republican Party say you have a plan.  They say you don’t give us humans more hardship than we can handle.  They say you know exactly what you are doing and there is no such thing as global warming.  And they say “God is Love.”

So, God, was that you last Friday loving on the 39 people who were killed by tornados, 21 of whom were in Kentucky and 12 in Indiana?  Your fans say you are in control of these things, not science, so that must have been you who decided to fling Indiana’s Babcock family from their home into a field via twister.  That must have been you who allowed their toddler, 15-month-old Angel, to stay alive for a day or two before allowing her to succumb to her traumatic brain injuries so that her devastated extended family had to make the agonizing decision to “pull the plug.”

Was that you, God?

I wouldn’t blame you for being fed up with mankind’s inability to use the superior brains you gave us to save us from ourselves.  We have made a fine mess of things, to be sure.  Even 2000+ years after you allegedly sent your son to the planet to save our sorry souls, we are still solving our problems by killing each other.  Oh, we have put our superior brains to work at developing incrementally lethal weapons with which to do our killing.  That we have accomplished.  And your devoted fans in the Republican Party don’t seem to have any problem with any of that.  That they file under “National Security” and parade off to church on Sunday singing “Onward Christian Soldiers.”

Was that you, God, who in 2010 sent that violent earthquake to Haiti to kill 316,000 people, injure 300,000 and make 1,000,000 homeless?  If you love all of us, as your fans insist you do, that is a funny way to show it.  Those Haitian people were already in a pretty bad way.  Many of the houses that earthquake destroyed were little more than shanty huts with tin roofs and dirt floors.  I cannot imagine that you would have a plan that would include such wholesale pain and suffering.  But your fans say it must, because you didn’t prevent it.

Was that really you, God?

That little girl in Georgia, Jorelys Rivera, who was snatched from her apartment complex’s playground, raped, bludgeoned to death and tossed into a trash compactor by a 20 year old janitor—what could she have done to deserve such a violent end to her life?  She was only seven years old. Your son was reported to have said “suffer the little children to come unto me…” (matthew/19-14)  Surely you could have interceded on this poor child’s behalf. 

You and I have had our moments, God.  I have struggled mightily with the evidence that negates your existence.  But then, something happens like it did yesterday.  I had a distant relative come to town for a conference over the weekend.  I picked her and her husband up at their hotel to give them a whirlwind tour of Atlanta.  Since it was a Sunday, the usual traffic madness that Atlantans endure during the week was reduced to a manageable lightness.  As I was passing by Georgia State University, I took too long pointing out a building and allowed the car to drift over the lane line into the path of a passing car.  The other driver reacted swiftly, laid on his horn and averted a collision.  He was as mad as a hornet, but we were spared an unpleasant turn of events, at the very least. 

It is times like that when I think you have intervened, God, and I usually whisper a quiet “Thank you, God.”  Those are the kinds of things I believe a “loving” God would do.

Was that you, God?

Others, your devoted fans especially, tend to think you are angry and send tornados and earthquakes and tsunamis to punish us for our transgressions.  I don’t buy it.  The God I was taught to believe in knows everything and would therefore be able to select the offenders from the masses.  The God I was taught to believe in would protect an innocent child and punish the man who would even think about harming her. 

Most important, the God I was taught to believe in would never punish me for questioning your motives or your very existence.  The so-called fear of God based on the fire and brimstone approach to religions created by mankind is not something I can believe.  Instead, I choose to believe the planet Earth is a complex environment that has its own plans.  The more humans rape and squander Earth’s resources; the more we allow our greed to fail to respect the delicate ecological balances; and the more we operate our “toys” without regard for the polluting effects they have on those balances, the more violent the Earth’s responses.

No, I don’t believe that was you, God.  But if it was, could you please lighten up?

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This sounds a whole lot like what a lot of the world's Jews were saying in 1945 when they (I wasn't born yet) figured out that God had "allowed" one out of every three of us to be murdered, including one out of every three children.

If I'm going to take a stab at theology, it would be this:
The only way we can be good is to have the freedom to be bad. Goodness can only be a choice. That means leaving mankind with the freedom to make bad choices.

Including those that affect nature. Sometimes natural disasters are just that - natural, and essentially random. Sometimes mankind interferes with climate conditions and storms become more frequent and harsher. We know, for example, that hurricanes are more powerful over warmer water, and we know that we have through atmospheric interference created conditions leading to warmer water. We may as a species have in that way contributed to, for example, the power of Katrina.

Lots of people have taken various stabs at this question. Try Harold Kushner; he gives it a decent shot. "When Bad Things Happen To Good People."

Good luck. This isn't an easy one. Personally, for whatever my own reasons are, I have faith, and I don't believe God runs around killing people, particularly because He's ostensibly pissed off at something we did.
I don't believe it was God either. Those who ascribe it all to God have two somewhat contradictory views: 1) If you're a "good" person, God was testing your faith; 2) If you're a "bad" person, God was punishing you for your lack of faith. In my view, it's 3) It's all pretty random, and you just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time.
Greatest comment ever sent God's way, "lighten up"
Kosh: Thanks for your input. I'm not sure I know what you mean by having faith. The existence of a higher being? If so, how do I refrain from thinking of him/her as playing with us, his/her creations, sitting back and watching us screw thing up? What is the purpose of God, if not to literally watch over us and guide us to "salvation?" It IS a tough one.

Cranky: You have summarized it perfectly. Why would God have to "test our faith" if he already knows whether we have it or not. I'm with you on #3, at least most of the time.
i knew in my heart that small child would not survive as i do believe the family called them to be with them. As for the woman who prayed to god for the storm to turn and it got looped over and over.. Man this is going to be in people's mouths for months.
I dont think God had anything to do with it. I think the storm just turned.. Lucky so lucky though
HUGGGGGGGGGG
Isn't He supposed to move in mysterious ways?
Think it was Hannibal Lecter's line about God dropping a church roof on 30 prayerful children huddled in a hallway. Not sure but I have to agree with what you've got to say in this post. I'd like to add my two cents: Whenever I hear Greens or other eco-folk talk about how we have to change our ways to "save the planet," I always reply,"It's not about saving the planet. The planet was doing just fine do what it does before we got here and it do just fine after we're gone. It's all about saving our asses."
JMac
There were earthquakes, tornadoes, and tidal waves long before there were people on this earth so....no...I don't think it was some sort of punishment. Sometimes I think that being God is a lot like being President: He gets too much credit when things are good and too much blame when things go bad. And that is as close to political as you will get me.
No, that wasn't God. Man's will is no match to God's Will, though many seem to forget this, especially during tulmultous trials and tribulations throughout history.

One of my friend's said that when something bad happens, it's not God's fault and yet we try to assign blame. Who do we blame when something good happens? Yup. God. Who do we blame when something bad happens? Good grief, I hope we don't blame God for the bad things that happen throughout all of eternity. If so, what's the point of believing...
Linda: I thought a lot about that family's fate. I agree it is good they are now all in the same place again.

DandyLion: Yes, but it was a human who said that, too.

jmac: Well put!
Curiously, I was listening to old-time radio on the Internet, to a show called "Family Theater." In it, someone representing the voice of God explained that sometimes, people lived and died by God's plan, a plan no mortal could ever understand, and that one simply had to accept it.

That brings to mind a battle I've had recently, in posts about bullying leading to school shootings. According to the philosophy promoted by most teachers and administrators (a philosophy that washes the blood off their hands) bullied children should "take it." When they don't - when they take action against their bullies, or simply go into a rage and kill the closest people out of their emotional agony and despair - they are apparently "not following God's will." That will is even expressed by people who are atheists or whose God isn't particularly bloodthirsty, or even Christian.

It's all part of that minefield of religion in America. And L, fortunately you didn't get blown up in your stroll through the minefield.
The only way that a god makes any sense to me is that he/she is someone or something that we can draw strength from in a random world that he/she somehow created, but doesn't control.
Neutron: Teachers and administrators have no clue how to handle the bully problems in schools, so they resort to that "take it" crap. Bullying is a behavioral problem. If it is to be helped, it first has to be acknowledged as such. Most bullying gets taught at home, indirectly or directly, so the solutions are definitely not easy to determine. Thanks for commenting.

jfsathre: ...which doesn't exactly make sense to me either. Why create something that cannot be controlled? Unless one is Frankenstein, I guess.
Wonderfully said, Leslie. I tend to believe God just lets us do our own thing - and we are certainly making a mess of it.
I have no argument about how this happened or why. I have no words, except sorrow for the human loss and the pain, suffering. I know that religion in this country, not all religion, has taken on the nature of a virus, a deadly virus. IT spreads no good and is only a tool of manipulative men.
"Where were you when I created the Universe?" isn't very comforting sometimes, but Job's answer to his travails seems a lot like life still.
Great post, L. I love your style.


Jman wrote:

Whenever I hear Greens or other eco-folk talk about how we have to change our ways to "save the planet," I always reply,"It's not about saving the planet.

Kinda like what Klaatu was saying in The Day The Earth Stood Still. We humans could go a long way toward “saving the Earth and most of the animals on it” by committing mass suicide.
Could be Gawd's just an asshole.
And in response to such question we get soporific nonsense like When Bad Things Happen to Good People. And who about all the good stuff that happens to bad people? I guarantee if that Adelson guy dumped 10 million on me, I'd do a lot more good with than New Gingrich. And what makes the Kocheads deserving of the billions they use to poison poor people and corrupt politics? And what good has Mitt ever done that he should accumulate $200 million or so, and still be begging poor people for $3 dollar donations?

Oh, and if you resent such questions, remember, you blessed me with this inquiring mind.
Let's hope God is listening. Very moving piece, Lezlie.
Natural disasters can certainly test someone's faith. I am pretty sure God turned us loose a long time ago. Bad things happen to good people, good things happen to bad people. It is pretty hard to believe......just believe.
Belinda T.: I'm sorry -- I seem to have missed your comment while I was responding to others. Based on your comment, it seems you believe that God is responsible for the good things but not the bad. Did I read you correctly?

David: Thanks for sticking you little toe into the political cesspool. I that as a compliment. :D

trilogy: Thanks.

Sheila: The sadness is overwhelming, so I seek a way to make sense of it.

Don: Thanks for your comment.

Frank: Yeah, maybe WE are the pollutants and not the emissions!

Tom: Thank goodness!

Erica: Thanks!
LSD: I have never been one to "just believe." It's just not in me.
If you believe as Einstein did, then in a way it is God. God believes in personal responsibility (ever hear that phrase (misused) before??), and as the Creator of nature that means the more you pollute your planet the more you suffer. So it's Nature's laws/ man's behavior we are seeing.

So in essence, only those who are stewards of the planet are God's actual followers.
The eternal cry...

And always the hope (God interfered to save me...).

Whenever the question of a personal God, creator of the universe, comes up, I think about the gahzillions of galaxies, each with gahzillions of stars. No wonder we're neglected...
Kosh expresses my sentiments so well here.

Brava, Ms. L. ! r.
Chicken Maaan: Didn't mean to skip you, either. I guess that's possible.
If it is God, I don't believe He does these things to punish us, but for some super-complex reason that our human minds can't understand but that is, despite all the horror and pain and awfulness, ultimately, for the greater good. I can't help but believe that, and yet when I see such incredible suffering, it's hard to take. Thanks for a thought-provoking post - and I love the last line.
Very powerful, Lezlie. R~
I find it all very confusing. God, Devil, good, evil, planned, random. Reincarnation. One life then nothing. Who really knows? I think the only thing that makes sense is that life isn't fair, so just do the best you can and be grateful for the good stuff.
Harry’s Ghost: That’s brilliant! I really like that.

Myriad: Yes, that is an awful lot to attend to, even for God.

Jon: Thanks!

Alysa: You have faith that there is, in fact, someone or something calling the shots “for the greater good.” That must be comforting, and sometimes I truly wish I had it.

Jaime: Thank you.
This should be an EP. Terrific.
Harry's Ghost:
"So, in a sense..."
Well, yes.

Stewards of the planet and also stewards of humanity, primarily in terms of how we treat each other.

In Judaism, particularly my branch, our biggest obligation is Repairing the World. That means different things to different Jews - in Orthodoxy, there's a lot of ritual tied to that; in my Reform movement, it's promoting ethics, which includes not dooming others by selfish conduct (such as making all the ice melt), which kind of adds up to, literally, Repairing the World. For what it's worth, Israel is either one of the only nations on Earth or actually the only nation on Earth where the number of trees has increased over time. Not Deforestation, but Forestation. (This is not an attempt to boost Israel, it's an attempt to show that there are people who agree with what he said quite literally.) From a religious standpoint, we aren't alone - Environmentalism has more recently become a concern in some fundamentalist churches based on the concept of Stewardship.

Lezlie,
Ultimately, of course, when if comes to faith it's all a gamble. You figure out what makes ethical sense to you using whatever source material resonates most with you, you try to make your life approximate your model, and you make your case when and if the time comes. I'd imagine the main factors when it comes to judgment will be how much thought you put into getting the model right and how much you put into living according to that model.

I can't theorize about the incomprehensible mix of cosmic indifference and personal Divine micromangement; my own experience suggests there's a lot of both. Deal as best you can.

I'd also suggest applying JFK's statement about patriotism to faith. "Ask not....."
The "devoted fans in the Republican Party" are hypocrites and liars who use God's name for their ends. I believe mankind is born with the intelligence and the will power to choose between good and evil. There are forces (some) beyond our control. The demagogues look for a scapegoat and call it "god".
R♥
I think this is a splendid article. I also don't believe it was God. Most of my life, I have questioned these things. I would like to think that God has a great sense of humor and also allows us to have some free will in what we do. However, I would like to think that there are consequences for those who are so horrible toward others, including animals and the planet in general.
I thought about that little girl quite a bit this weekend and heard this morning that she was taken off life support. I would also like to think that she is with her family. We may not know if there really is a God but I would like to believe that he/she allows us to experience things in which there is no blame, just a randomness that provides teachable moments for those willing to learn.
As for school bullies, as a former science teacher who left the last school (in the midsouth where evangelicals ran the public schools with a dedication to making them Christian only), you were considered in a negative light if you did try to help curb bullying and work with students. I was "lectured" about giving my students an opening day message that I would NOT allow bullying or anything related while expressing that students should feel comfortable and in confidentiality, coming to me or another teacher with their fears no matter how popular the student bullying them. But then, all schools seem to be a breeding ground for the ills that affect society at large.
Well at least He, through his human agents perhaps, isn't visiting the bubonic plague or the Spanish flu of wide swathes of the planet. And I don't know how you can pin global warming on Him, except for making such defective creatures in the first place. As for visiting another civilization destroying meteorite on us, well, who knows what He has in store.
I don't believe in any religion and if their was a God at one time, like a Deist, I believe they left a long time ago and left us to our own devises, which we promptly screwed up in the name of excess and greed. We are on our on L, there is no Captain at the rudder.
This is an excellent prose psalm addressing the problem Leibniz coined "theodicy," i.e., “an attempt to resolve the evidential problem of evil and reconcile God's traditional characteristics of omnibenevolence, omnipotence and omniscience (all-loving, all-powerful, and all-knowing) with the occurrence of evil in the world. " There *is* no good answer and some of the attempts at an answer, if foisted upon a person in the throes of these inexplicable tragedies, human-induced or otherwise, are likely to make them want to spit sharp tacks at the blatherer's unprotected eyeballs.
This morning on CNN, there were a few interviewees of different faiths, one of which was a Jewish rabbi who suggested these times call for a “defiant” faith, one that is free to rail at God about the inhumanity and injustice and horror. God can take it and, I believe, is with us in the midst of them. I think God is far less pissed with people who yell about the unfairness of the tragedies, than with the jackanapes who try to pin the tragedies on God. Very often, I don’t know what the f*ck God thinks God is doing, but I’m pretty sure God doesn’t arrange to have little girls desecrated and murdered, doesn’t hurl down tornadoes to destroy people’s lives. Just my two cents.


P. S. - Since the footnote didn't transfer, that definition of theodicy comes from Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theodicy
phyllis45’s Bright Eyes: That’s all we can do.

Kosh: I am becoming more and more comfortable with the concept of Stewardship.

Fusun: As I read your comment I suddenly realized how often the words "me” and “my” were used in the rant Barbara Joanne posted today. If you haven’t read it, check it out.

Patsy K: Thank you for your thoughts. I wouldn’t last two days in the school you described.

Abra: A friend told me about a bumper sticker today that says “God knows. I don’t.”

Scanner: It sure feels that way.
Jett Noire: Thank you for your interesting comment. You taught me a new word/concept, theodicy. And I am stealing this: “…spit sharp tacks at the blatherer’s unprotected eyeballs.”
Thanks for articulating so much that is on my mind , and very likely, on many minds. If he is really here, God's mysterious ways are just too much. A child called, Angel, died today, from the tornado, and it blew my mind. Cool piece, Lezlie.
fernsy: Angel really got to me, too. Anytime a child is a victim, I have questions.
No need to steal. I'm glad to share. It's my version of:

Psalm 58.6:


"O God, break the teeth in their mouths;
tear out the fangs of the young lions, O Lord!"

The psalmist is suggesting God might want to punch his enemy's teeth out. The Psalms are full of many of the same sentiments you express in your post. And then some.
As always, you say it all so well. Though I kind of like Apisa's take on it, too: We humans could go a long way toward “saving the Earth and most of the animals on it” by committing mass suicide.

Maybe I'll just dig out "When Bad Things Happen To Good People." It's probably time for a re-read.
One more thing (this is a great topic, L!): that bit about God not giving us more than we can handle? It comes from

1 Corinthians 10.13:

"No testing has overtaken you that is not common to everyone. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tested beyond your strength, but with the testing he will also provide the way out so that you may be able to endure it."

It's about resisting temptation, not about handling the random cruelties of life.
Now that I've read the rest of the comments, most of the time I think the true nature of God is something that's none of our business. Other times I think we're just an early experiment in God's kid's new chemistry set.
nerd cred: I think we are already committing mass suicide, in a way. Building nuclear weapons, rattling sabers all over the world, depleting the planet's resources...we will eventually self-destruct. It sounds as if you are as conflicted as I am.
It was God. Gods came into our imagination as a way to explain tornadoes, earthquakes, hurricanes, avalanches, tsunamis, sandstorms, and, yes, floods.

God is nature, which is random, except when humans disturb it with pollutants, and then bad results, of some type, are predictable.

Religion, though, is about, "Authority and control." And that opinion, though I share it, is not mine, but Mr. Hawking's and anyone who wants to be religious ought to take a hard, long and introspective comparison as to why they believe poorly educated narcissistic power freaks over the guy who helped put rovers on Mars.

Imua (Onward)
Oahusurfer: That is exactly what our Native ancestors lived by, which is why their cultures are so respectful of nature. Religion is definitely about authority and control. Thank you!
I can understand why one would question God in the light of horrific events that seem to be running rampant in our world today. Unfortunately, their is a dichotomy at play. For those who do believe in God, like myself, his goodness is yanged by the evil of Satan. Sometimes, bad things happen, and we will not always have understanding over why. I guess for me, I look at it differently. I find my faith helps me get through the struggles, so I can come out the other side; from the darkness into the light. But, I respect your piece, your opinion, and your questions. Thanks for sharing, Lezlie.
Two of the hardest questions I have ever gotten:
Why do bad things happen to good people?
Why does God allow bad things to happen?

Joplin is where my daughter goes to college, and the deaths and devastation there defy belief.
And those in my church ask again..."Why God?"
I ask as well.

I have no answers, and I DON'T think it is wrong to ask God those questions.
I think Christians are called to understand God as best they can, and I believe He can stand up to scrutiny.

But as for me...I am clueless...and frustrated....and devastated as more and more happens.
JessyLynn: Your faith serves you exactly the way it is supposed to, I think. Thank you for your non-judgmental comment.

J.D.: Joplin was hit extremely hard. I'm glad your daughter was not harmed.
...peace be with you...really...there are "places in the heart" where you might find a mysterious answer to your question, but this, i would surmise from your post, you already know and yearn to understand...in a pinch, you might find what might be thought of as that answer's shadow in a movie of the same "name"...i would dare to suggest that you investigate what is contained in the formal teachings of that institution that has existed since - and through - the "alleged" event of which you have written...or perhaps you might check out the jewish sephirot's "din" and "hesed"...there are so many other places to seek and find the wonder of unfolding mysteries...many of us have been and have recorded in many different ways both Wisdom and folly...as for those "faithful" republicans - try not to make the same mistake as they do...at worst, ignorance is not bliss; at best, neither is stupidity - but one is much more easily forgiven than the other...btw, if you want to "lightnen up" yourself, watch the movie "sordid lives"...otherwise, enlightenment might be found in the "wiki"-ing of (and the dying words found in) the movie "diary of a parish priest": "...all is grace..." - including your post...thank you...peace--->mark
I'm with kosher here, I believe we were given free will and God suffers along with the rest of us at our terrible choices, including the way we treat this planet....simplistic answer, maybe, but if we treated each other and our world with a sense of compassion and stewardship, most if not all of these horrors would not be carried out.
That said, and not to sound horribly cruel and callous, we all have to die somehow. Painless death for 100% of us just isn't realistic. I hesitate to even that last part in there, as I truly believe in God's mercy as well as the gift of free will we have horribly blundered with bad choices...
Thought-provoking and well said, as usual.
My prayers go with you tomorrow, L.
My God and your God as well, is not a punishing God. Yet, the naysayers are quick to point the finger of blame squarely on His back. God's hand is not involved in natural disasters...on the contrary...maybe more of a legitimate hand in all of the mess is man's disrespect for Mother Earth and her natural resources.
Made in the image of God...man. GREAT POST L.
The best way I reconcile this is to remember that God gave Lucifer, his highest, yet fallen Angel, the earth. He is titled, the prince and the power of the air. Satan told Jesus he would give him everything he could see if only Jesus would bow to him when he was in exile in prayer and fasting. Jesus didn't rebuke Satan and say, "this is my world not yours," because it isn't, right now. So, the bad things that happen IN this world are evil doings. But, God is there with us, providing comfort for those who mourn, rest for the weary, and help in times of trouble. Through Jesus, God's son, and our Savior, we can have shelter in the storms. And, as Carol commented on FB, our choices/actions have consequences. God will chastise his own. And secondly, original sin has left a cloud over us. The adverse affects of Adam and Eve's sin in the garden of Eden has changed a perfect world to an imperfect one to which everyone is a victim. My prayer is you find peace in the Grace God provided through His Son, Jesus, the Sacrificial Lamb.
L, in response to my first comment, you wrote:

Frank: Yeah, maybe WE are the pollutants and not the emissions!

That brought to mind another movie quote apropos of your topic. This one is from Agent Smith in the movie, The Matrix.



I'd like to share a revelation that I've had during my time here. It came to me when I tried to classify your species and I realized that you're not actually mammals. Every mammal on this planet instinctively develops a natural equilibrium with the surrounding environment but you humans do not. You move to an area and you multiply and multiply until every natural resource is consumed and the only way you can survive is to spread to another area. There is another organism on this planet that follows the same pattern. Do you know what it is? A virus. Human beings are a disease, a cancer of this planet. You're a plague and we are the cure.
I accept God/the Creator for what it is. Good, bad, ugly...the whole package! There are times I don't believe God/the Creator exists. Then I realize all the miracles I've witnessed during my lifetime are proof enough that there is a higher authority at work and a few of us are fortunate to walk with angels on this plane of existence.

OTH, God/the Creator has a wicked sense of humor. That's why humans continue to evolve. Eventually, we will be extinct and another species will take our place and stead.
No, that was me, sorry! beautifully threaded and thought provoking piece. Subtle. R
If you believe in an omniscient deity then you cannot know the intricacies of his actions and how they relate to his plans for the world. If you are like me and do not subscribe to the notion then you will see that it is nature and there is no rhyme or reason, just awful chance.
Excellent post and excellent questions! I'm not sure how I missed this....probably because I'm not here as much as I used to be. This quotation from you is so close to how I would answer your question.

"Most important, the God I was taught to believe in would never punish me for questioning your motives or your very existence. The so-called fear of God based on the fire and brimstone approach to religions created by mankind is not something I can believe. Instead, I choose to believe the planet Earth is a complex environment that has its own plans. The more humans rape and squander Earth’s resources; the more we allow our greed to fail to respect the delicate ecological balances; and the more we operate our “toys” without regard for the polluting effects they have on those balances, the more violent the Earth’s responses."

I don't believe God (if He exists) intervenes in our world in the way the Republicans say He does. I believe He does intervene, but not the obvious ways where we can necessarily explain or witness it. I believe He allows nature to do its thing, good and bad. He gave us the gift of "free will" and allows us to use it. The result of what we choose can come across as a "punishment" or a "blessing." Can He intervene? I think so and probably has in our history. Perhaps miracles or the unexplainable. I also, unlike the Republicans, can't pretend to really know the answers. I'm only guessing. My mind can't possibly comprehend the infinite or God, if He exists. I do believe there is a reason for everything and that in time, we will all understand His ways. His ways may not be our ways, but I trust that He knows best even in the unimaginable.
I Love Life: I'm glad you had a chance to take a look at this one. It does appear we have similar beliefs...and similar questions, too. Thanks for your thoughtful comment.
I enjoyed your post. It left me with more questions than answers but it gave my grey cells a bit of a workout.