Young children love to ask “why?” They are curious and inquisitive. They have an internal drive to understand the world in which they live. Adolescents ask “why?” They want to gain independence, develop their own sense of values and beliefs, and some really still want to understand what is behind the decisions that others make and the reasons that things happen as they do. Adults continue ask “why?”, but frequently they limit the times and places to where they feel their question will be understood, is appropriate, and will not expose their level of intelligence. Because their habit patterns are set and their behavior follows a belief system that is well in place, it is important they find out the reason behind any change in thinking or actions which has been recommended to or required of them. Perhaps an equally important question to be combined with “why?” is “why not?” This second question may be the motivation that moves anyone from an inert stance to action, from passivity or indifference to enthusiasm and responsiveness.
When the authors of the New Testament epistles wrote to the new believers in Jesus, they were eager to not only explain to them what their “new life in Christ” would look like, but the reasons behind these ideas and instructions. For example, in Romans, Paul spent the first 11 chapters telling them what Jesus had done for them in His birth, death, resurrection and ascension. He made it very clear that it was only in view of God’s mercy they could now “offer their bodies as living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God, as their spiritual worship”. He was careful to include a wide variety of reasons why this was extremely important, as well as to provide the answers to the question, “why not?” His heart’s desire was for them to find the joy and peace He knew would only come to them as they put their trust in the God of hope – Romans 15:13.
When you find yourself asking God some of your “why” questions, it would be wise to remember to ask the other important question – “why not?” Putting those 2 questions together may help you to find your way or better yet – His way. He promised to all those who trust in Him with all their heart and don’t lean on their understanding that He would direct their paths – Proverbs 3: 5 – 6.