Have you read The Shack? Have you had a chance to see the recently released movie? I’ve been able to do both. I’m not a fan of controversy and I realize that today’s subject could very well be a bit controversial for some, but that’s not my goal. I’m not looking for a theological debate. In fact, I don’t think most of us could do well in one anyway.
I admit after I read The Shack back in 2009 I started hearing all the conversation about the book and a lot of it was negative. I didn’t join in the conversation, but I was baffled. I couldn’t understand why it was being picked apart. Nor did I want to try to understand.
I’m a simple person. I probably do read into some things way more than I should. Which is what I believe people are doing with this story. Why is it that we can’t just simply see that God has used an experience a hurting man had with Him to bless others? How He took a very tragic thing and has brought glory to Himself through it? Good from it? How He has used this man’s story to bring healing to so many that have their own Shack. So many that have been deeply wounded. Why is that viewed as such a bad thing? Of course, this is the perfect spot to add the appropriate verse for this very subject.
And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. Romans 8:28.
I don’t know about you, but I sure am glad we have these promises in the Bible. I sure am glad to hear story after story of how God uses what was meant for bad into something beautiful. It’s beautiful because it causes us to do a three sixty and give glory to Him.
Consider these verses about what God intends for you.
Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us. Romans 5:3-5
You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives. Genesis `5:20
All this is for your benefit, so that the grace that is reaching more and more people may cause thanksgiving to overflow to the glory of God. 2 Corinthians 4:15
I don’t pretend to understand the mind of God. I don’t pretend to understand why things happen. Bad things. I do know that we live in a fallen, sinful world. I do know there are terrible evil people. But I serve a loving, faithful and merciful God. Therefore, the following are the reasons why I’m a fan of the Shack, and I think you should be too. Here’s why.
I’m a fan of anything that God chooses to use to bring glory to Himself.
To cause people to be aware of Him. To be their story. How many times have you witnessed for yourself God using the testimony of one to reach another? We’ve all seen it over and over again. Yet he did not waver through unbelief regarding the promise of God, but was strengthened in his faith and gave glory to God. Romans 4:20
I’m a fan of healing to the hurting family.
This family, especially the father and daughter, were suffering greatly from this tragedy and were drowning in the grief. They were so brokenhearted. Punishing themselves for something they had no control over. Wallowing in guilt that wasn’t theirs to claim. He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds. Psalm 147:3
I’m a fan of dreams.
Yeah, they can be really strange sometimes. But I do believe God uses our dreams to speak into our hearts. Even heal our wounded hearts. Another debatable subject I’m sure, but I encourage you to dig in the Bible for yourself. See Daniel, Genesis and Acts to name just a few. And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my Spirit on all flesh; your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, and your young men shall see visions. Joel 2:28
I’m a fan of stories.
Stories that help us understand in all of our humanness of the depth of the Father’s love for us. How about the story of the Good Samaritan? In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him. In this is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. 1 John 4:9-11
I’m a fan of God’s deep unfathomable love for us.
He’s gotten our attention in so many different ways. Has he used the sunset to speak to you? How about the innocence of a child? The intricacies of how our bodies work? This list could go on and be endless. My favorite verses that speak of His deep love for us is in Romans. No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8:37-39
These are just a few of the reasons why I’m a fan of The Shack and I think you should be too. Instead of focusing on any negative bits you can pick out, why not ask God to show you personally what He’d like to through this story. I would venture to say He has something specific for each and everyone of us, speaking directly into our hearts from His. I’d love to hear your positive thoughts on it too, if you’re a fan like me. What has He shown you specifically?