Today a question was posed to me that has actually been posed to me a few times before. I was asked, "Why does God let bad things happen?"
Loaded question for a Wednesday, right?
I'll admit, I've fumbled through the answer every other time I've been asked this. I'd come up with some Sunday School answer and change the subject quickly. I think, in part, because I've always had a hard myself understanding why bad things happen.
Tsunamis, job loss, earthquakes, cancer, car accidents, death, tornadoes , - these are all things that plague believers and non-believers alike. These are all things that are yes, terrible and very hard to go through no matter what your religious stance.
Say you're a non-believer. You go to the doctor for a routine check-up only to be told that you have terminal cancer. What do you do?
You will probably be angry, hurt, frustrated - you might cry out to God and ask him why he allowed this to happen.
I'm not going to blame you - everyone's allowed grief.
Say, now that you are a believer. Same scenario - check-up, cancer, it's terminal.
What do you do?
The same thing?
Now, I'm not judging anyone for the way they react to anything. That's not the point. I can't say what I would do in that situation because I've never been in it.
But what are we supposed to do?
Believe that God allowed these things to happen to us?
He doesn't want them to happen to us, but it is through these times that he wants us to learn to trust Him.
When I hear of trials I always think of Job. Job literally had everything taken from him and his first reaction was to complain? No. His first reaction was to praise God.
At this, Job got up and tore his robe and shaved his head. Then he fell to the ground and in worship(in worship!) and said "Naked I came from my mother's womb, and naked I will depart. The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away. May the name of the Lord be praised."
I cannot imagine having my house, land, income and family taken from me and then - without thought - praising the name of the Lord.
This is the deal:
God did not promise us that life would be easy. He actually says the exact opposite:
"I have told you this so that in me you will have peace. In this world you will have trouble, but take heart! I have overcome the world."
It's a promise.
"I have overcome the world."
"I've already taken care of this."
How comforting is that?
He's got this.
We're going to crash and burn.
Horrible things are going to happen.
This life is ugly.
It's mean, unforgiving and full of negative things.
We're going to fall.
That's a promise.
But so is the fact that He will be there to pick us up when we do.
I'll leave you with this song. I've been obsessed with it ever since the first time I heard it a couple of weeks ago.