The Freedom of Choice
hNote: photo credit - Gerd Altmann, Germany)
Our eight-year grandson got upset one afternoon because everyone was telling him what to do. Poor little guy. He was frustrated. Later, when his parents hooked up the latest "virtual assistant" technology in the family room, the "Alexa," our grandson took great delight in giving it commands.
"Alexa, turn out the lights!" he ordered, then spouted, "Alexa, turn on the T.V.!" He grinned, happy with the immediate response. "Her" voice sounded human, too, although robotic. A faithful assistant, Alexa delivered exactly what he wanted, never interjecting anything that was not asked for, and never disagreeing or talking back. Her "behavior" was stellar. A+. Perfect.
Unlike artificial intelligence, as humans, we have been granted the freedom to choose how we live. The One who formed our innermost being created us with the intention of not controlling or manipulating us, instead allowing us to be in charge of our own actions and decisions.
If we were created to operate with artificial intelligence, we, too, would be perfect. Like an Alexa, we, would answer every question with spot-on accuracy. We would never make a mistake. If we had to make decisions, they would be perfect ones. It's hard to imagine what we would be like if we were perfect. Would we have our own thoughts or feelings, or hinge more along the lines of an "Alexa?"
On a similar note regarding perfection, arguments ensue. You've heard them. They go something like this: "If God exists, why do bad things happen? Why do people suffer?" and "If God exists, why isn't the world a perfect place?" These are tough questions. However, if God exists (and personally, I believe He does), without a doubt, He is a God of love. As our Creator and Originator of the universe, His intention was never to manipulate us, control us, or turn us into perfect beings who would respond to him without flaw. This is a God who loves us enough to allow us to make our own choices.
Because we are free to choose, we make mistakes, so our world is not perfect. But there is One who knows all, who is perfect, the true source of all intelligence. His desire is that we will make choices to lead us in the right direction--through Him.
When we need God's guidance and help, He is there for us. He's just a prayer away. No internet connection required.
Proverbs 3:5-6 "Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight."
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