If you’ve seen the movie “The Giver”, you’ve had a glimpse at what the world would look like without evil. This movie depicts a civil society where everyone follows established rules, choices have been taken away and sameness is emphasised. The people are even kept in check with drugs when unacceptable feelings arise. Everyone thinks they’re happy, because there is no pain or suffering. The young boy Jonas receives memories from the time before this society was established, memories which cause him joy as well as pain, both emotions he never knew before. Jonas realizes that life is not complete without both good and bad experiences, and he chooses the most important new feeling: love.
God never meant for evil to exist in the world he created. But he did endow his creation with one important thing: love. Without free will, there would be no love - much like the society in The Giver. Imagine your life, in a world with no crime, no illness, no pain, no destruction, not even an argument. Now imagine that same life, but add to it living in a house you didn’t choose, with a spouse you don’t have the capacity to love, going to an assigned job, hanging out with friends when you don’t know how to be a friend. That is a world without choice.
God’s greatest desire for mankind was to allow for love, not only in our relationships with other humans, but with Him. Our relationships with our spouses, children, friends, and God are meaningful because we have the capacity to choose and to feel emotions.
God’s gift of free will wasn’t possible without the potential for evil, and our greatest potential is love.
And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love. -1 Corinthians 13:13
Challenge: Make a list of people you love. During your devotion time, thank God for your capacity to love these people.