The Russian invasion of Georgia has deeply affected me. Why is God once more allowing nations to go to war?
Proverbs 22:3 A prudent man sees danger and takes refuge, but the simple keep going and suffer for it.
The people of Georgia are on my mind today. I don’t mean the Southern State; I’m talking about the sovereign nation in Eurasia, where Russian tanks invaded last Friday.
I can remember reading somewhere that history repeats itself when we don’t learn from our mistakes. This Russian invasion reminds me of when Hitler entered the Sudetenland of Czechoslovakia and when the Soviets invaded Hungary. The world did little about those situations – one caused a world war and the other started the Cold War.
I don’t want to go back to those days of fearing a nuclear holocaust, and I don’t want my children to feel the same. Georgia is on my mind today, so I pray that the world will come to its senses to put an end to this invasion and fighting. If not, then we seem doomed to go through another Cold War of distrust, suspicion, and insecurity.
I sometimes ask God why humans are so intent on killing one another. Throughout the world, hundreds of thousands of people are killed each year by other people. What other creature on earth does this? Why does God elevate us to divine heights and allow us to bring ourselves down into inhumane hell? Why doesn’t God stop this, punish the wicked, and recreate a new world where peace, harmony, and love dwell? Is God sleeping or is He crazy, expecting things to be different, by allowing us to do the same things over and over again?
I don’t understand it and I want God to intervene, but that would mean giving up free will and bringing history to an end. Things look bleak for the Georgians and perhaps there will be no easy solution to this crisis. All that I can do is wait and pray, hope and ask God to deliver the Georgian people from the Russian invaders. But why do I feel as if I’ve been here before? Why does this seem to be divine déjà vu?
Prayer: Lord God, history is a great mystery and sometimes the living of these days is hard to endure. We pray for the people of Georgia and we ask that You protect them. We do not know where these events are taking us, but we claim safety and refuge in You alone. Help the world heal. In Jesus’ Name, we pray. Amen.
John Stuart is the pastor of Erin Presbyterian Church in Knoxville, Tennessee.