God Is Not Co-Dependent
"Faith without deeds [action] is dead."1
It is amazing how many email messages I receive from people who can't understand why God allows certain things to happen—many of which are things that the individuals themselves caused to happen. One lady was convinced that God chose her "terrible husband" as she put it. An unmarried couple couldn't understand why God allowed them to fall pregnant! Amazing.
The reality is that God isn't co-dependent. He won't short-circuit the consequences of our choices and actions, nor will he deliver us from the effects of our destructive behaviors. Neither will God do anything for us that we can and need to do for ourselves.
Ron Clarke from Tasmania wrote, "I know that the expression 'God helps those who help themselves' is not biblical but it is not that far removed from God's Word that says, "Faith without deeds is dead." I have always admired the statement by Sophocles (496-406 B.C.), considered one of the greatest of all Greek dramatists, that said, "Heaven ne'er helps the man who will not help himself."
As John Powell put it, "Some people treat God as if he were a giant Bayer's aspirin. 'Take God three times a day and you won't feel any pain!'"
Faith doesn't work that way. We are all responsible for the choices we make and the actions we take. True, we are saved by faith and not by works/deeds. However, our deeds/actions prove whether or not our faith is valid. Whatever we are capable of doing for ourselves we need to do—and be willing to help those who cannot help themselves.
Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please help me always to be responsible and act in a mature manner. And please show me if there are any areas in my life where I am not acting in this way. Thank you for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus' name, amen."
1. James 2:26 (NIV).