I feel a series coming on:  God v. The Machine.  During the past few months, this topic has been close to my heart, and if you are reading this post, I bet the same could be said for you.

 

So what is The Machine?  The Machine is the inner mechanics of today’s typical corporate and industry infrastructure.   It’s a dehumanizing system characterized mainly by greed and designed with the primary goal of achieving monetary gains.  The Machine is usually comprised of large conglomerates, including, but not limited to, the banks, retail chains, the credit card industry and insurance companies.  The Machine has far reach and deep pockets.  It’s fueled by power and vices.  When dealing with The Machine, you are no longer considered a person.  You are a number, a means to an end—its end.

 

Okay, so my definition of The Machine was a little vague and somewhat cryptic—sort of!  Here are some practical examples of The Machine at work:

 

  • Trying to resolve a credit/financial dispute but cannot progress beyond the hold times and transferals
  • Trying to resolve a legal dispute, but the cost of legal counsel is more than you make in a year.
  • Trying to resolve an insurance claim dispute, but get bogged down by insurance submission codes.

 

Do you get the picture?  I wonder how much time the average person wastes trying to resolve issues that should rightfully take no more than a fraction of the time spent.  How many times are people needlessly spun in circles due to purposeful or inadvertent ineptitude?  Many of us know what it is like to spend consecutive hours (or sequential days) on the phone with customer service representatives only to find out that, not only was our issue unresolved, but that we have to restart our attempt for resolution because the left hand had no idea what the right hand was doing.  This, my friend, is the modus of operandi of The Machine.  The Machine is not above threats, scare tactics or bullying.  Why would it be?  The Machine has the resources to defend and protect itself.  The Machine is backed by money, lobbyists, and in some case, even the law.  So how could a mere commoner go up against the power of The Machine?

 

The personification of The Machine makes it seems as though The Machine is a sci-fi entity that exists independently of a host.  It is not.  Unfortunately, many of the people who comprise The Machine are people just like you and me who have bought into the ideology of the system.  For example, when an insurance agent denies an individual’s life-saving procedure simply because of protocol, then, that individual has become a part of the inner workings of The Machine—a part of the problem.

 

 

So, where is God in all of this?  Surely God must be aware of the injustices of our World Systems?  The injustices of The Machine begs many questions.  Firstly, is The Machine greater than God?  Secondly, is God influenced by The Machine? Lastly, is God idly watching as the Machine assert its power?  The answers to those questions are best found in Scripture.

 

Deuteronomy 10:17 says, “For the LORD your God is God of gods and Lord of lords, the great God, mighty and awesome, who shows no partiality and accepts no bribes,” (NLT).  When referencing Jesus, Isaiah 9:6-7 says, “The government will rest on his shoulders.  And he will be called: Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. 7His government and its peace will never end,” (NLT).

 

God is not afraid of the cable company.  He cannot be bought by the Insurance or Banking industries.  He is just and impartial.  The wealth of those on Earth are merely temporal.  I believe that God is concerned about the treatment of His people.  Furthermore, I also believe that God is on high alert regarding the mistreatment of His people.  Our Earthly treasures are meant to edify and to uplift, not to depression and/or oppress.  According to the Word of God, we should:

17Teach those who are rich in this world not to be proud and not to trust in their money, which is so unreliable. Their trust should be in God, who richly gives us all we need for our enjoyment. 18Tell them to use their money to do good. They should be rich in good works and generous to those in need, always being ready to share with others. 19By doing this they will be storing up their treasure as a good foundation for the future so that they may experience true life. 20Timothy, guard what God has entrusted to you. Avoid godless, foolish discussions with those who oppose you with their so-called knowledge. 21Some people have wandered from the faith by following such foolishness.  May God’s grace be with you all (1 Timothy 6: 17-21, NLT).

 

My prayer for you today is that if you find yourself in a position of oppression, petition to the God who is God of ALL gods and Lord of ALL lords.  Paul wrote in 2 Corinthians 12 that God’s power works best in weakness.  Paul further stated,  “That’s why I take pleasure in my weaknesses, and in the insults, hardships, persecutions, and troubles that I suffer for Christ. For when I am weak, then I am strong,” (2 Corinthians 12:10).  It’s during our weakest moments when God can prove to be our biggest advocates.