Today, because of various circumstances, I found myself questioning God more than ever.
Why does He allow horrible things to happen in life? If He is a God of love, why is it that some of the things He allows to happen don’t seem loving at all? As I was going through all these questions in my mind I came across something I wrote last semester:
(Written on March 27, 2011)
I’m learning that it’s easy to trust God when life is going easy; when skies are blue and everything seems to be going our way. It’s easy to keep a smile on your face when you’re free from worry. The words “God is so good” are prevalent in our vocabulary in times like these. But what about when the blue skies begin to fade to gray, and a storm is on its way? Maybe you have a big test coming up, maybe you got into an argument with a friend, maybe you or someone you love is facing health complications, or maybe you lost someone who was very dear to you. Your “easy” days have become ones now flooded with trials. Circumstances of life can change in an instant, and can potentially alter how we view our unchanging God. All of a sudden it’s extremely easy to forget that God is so good. If you’re anything like me, you find yourself asking, “why did God let this happen if He loves me?” I don’t understand why things happen the way they do. I don’t understand why God decided to bring my grandpa home to be with Him when He knew how precious he was to me. I don’t understand how a devastating disaster in Japan can be part of a loving God’s plan. After trying to figure it out for so long, I’ve found that I don’t always need to know. What I do know is that God is absolutely perfect. He knows everything, sees everything, is everywhere, and He can do anything. Because God is perfect, His plan and will for our lives is also perfect. Deuteronomy 32:4 says “He is the Rock, his works are perfect, and all his ways are just. A faithful God who does no wrong, upright and just is he.” He is a faithful God, even in those times of trial. 2 Samuel 22:31 says “As for God, his way is perfect; the word of the LORD is flawless. He is a shield for all who take refuge in him.” When trials come into our lives we can run to God and take our refuge in Him. Another thing I am absolutely sure of is that God loves us and He has displayed His love for all of us by sending His son to die in our place. Because of sin,which is in complete opposition to the character of God, we deserve death. However, because of the great love God has for us, He has offered us the free gift of salvation through His son, Jesus Christ (Romans 6:23). God didn’t have to send His own son to die- but He loved you enough to, so that you have the opportunity to spend eternity with Him. We see how loving God is through His desire for no one to perish, but for everyone to come to repentance and live for Him. For believers, we have the promise that “nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Even unpleasant circumstances which are present in our lives are unable to separate us from God’s love. Whether we’re facing trials or blue skies, as believers we can have constant joy because nothing is able to take us away from the love of God.
I’m not writing this to tell you that I know exactly why God allows things to happen the way they do. I struggle with having joy when my circumstances are unpleasant. I’m writing this simply to say that God is unchanging. His love for us is so amazing and never failing. He has a great plan for our lives and everything He does is for His glory and our good. Right now it may not look like the circumstances you’re facing could possibly be part of God’s plan- however remember that all things do work together for good for those who love God (Romans 8:28). Though we may not be able to see it now, over time God can use those trials in our lives to make us stronger. James 1:2-4 “Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. And let patience have its perfect work, so that you may be perfect and entire , lacking in nothing” God is good and He does have a plan.
This is a lesson I am still learning. Things happen all the time that I do not understand. This year has been filled with circumstances that caused me to question God and His goodness. God is teaching me that rather than doubting His goodness, I need to react by placing all my trust in Him. Proverbs 3:5-6 is a verse which has been a huge encouragement to me this semester: ”Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will direct your paths” God is also teaching me that I need to constantly remind myself that He has a wonderful plan and He is in control. “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” (Jeremiah 29:11)
Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.” 2 Corinthians 4:16-18