We are going to have trials and suffer while we are here on earth. God wants us to trust Him at all times. He can use the most agonizing, baffling trials for growth, as well as for His glory. We will only find comfort in His presence.
Monday, June 9, 2008
I lay my "whys?"
before Your cross
in worship kneeling,
my mind beyond all hope,
my heart beyond all feeling;
realize that I
in knowing You,
don't need a "why?"
--Ruth Bell Graham
Why? Why does God let bad things happen to good people?
to innocent people?
to helpless people?
to defenseless people?
Sometimes His ways seem so hard to understand!
Through all these avenues, realizing there are no pat answers to the age-old question of suffering, and no "new truth," we can cling to the spiritual principle operating in the life of a child of God that . . .
gives meaning to our meaninglessness
and hope to our hopelessness
and reason to our senselessness
and purpose to our aimlessness
and strength to our weakness
and courage to our faintheartedness
and blessed deliverance from our bitterness.
It's a principle . . .
that helps balance the pain,
that can remove the sting from our suffering,
that can prevent us from wasting our sorrows,
that is worth our focused attention.
This principle emerged into sharp visibility when Jesus gave His life on the Cross, was buried, and on the third day arose from the dead to give eternal life to any and all who would place their faith in Him.
On a day still to come, this same principle will be thrillingly displayed when the intense suffering that characterizes the final generation in human history gives "birth" to the glorious return to earth of God's Son and our Savior, Jesus Christ.
Paul somewhat understated this same principle in Romans 8:28: "We know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose."
Paul was reminding the children of God they can be confident that . . .
all things work together for good,
brokenness leads to blessing,
death leads to life,
and suffering leads to glory!
In our world today, God's children need that same reminder to trust Him when we don't understand and nothing seems to make sense.
We can look at the Gospel of John, chapter 11. This is the story of Lazarus, a beloved friend of Jesus who became seriously ill. It's also the story of Lazarus' two sisters, Mary and Martha, who struggled to understand why Jesus hadn't intervened and healed their brother. While both sisters sent word to Jesus, Mary's faith seemed to collapse when things got worse while Martha's small tendril of faith was developed until she saw the glory of God in her brother's life.
The above is excerpts are taken from the book "Why?" written by Anne Graham Lotz.