We have all wondered at times why God allows bad things to happen; divorce, the death of children, natural disasters, etc. Does everything happen for a reason? Is everything happening according to God’s plan? When we are struggling with loss, pain, and hopelessness questions arise that may cause us to question our faith. As we reach out to others hoping to make some sense of the chaos we come across two typical Christian responses.
- Everything happens according to God’s will.
- God gave humans free will thus giving up some of His control. He doesn’t dictate to us or control us; that is left to each individual. Therefore, God doesn’t cause bad things to happen, instead, good or bad events are the result of decisions made by people. The decisions of others can directly affect you and me. Even decisions from previous generations have an impact on us today. For example, the environment is suffering because of society’s decisions which began long ago, thus causing adverse effects and weather changes on the planet. The same goes for divorce; God isn’t going to take away a person’s choice (free will) because the decision they are making is wrong. We are simply going to suffer the consequences.
I tend to side with #2 and feel that we live in a fallen world with imperfect humans making good and bad decisions leading to both positive and negative outcomes. Sometimes the pain is so bad that it is hard to understand why something happened but often the answer to ‘why’ isn’t what we need to know; the real question is what are you going to do now?
Romans 8:28 – And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.
When you give the bad things that happen in your life over to God He will reveal His power, love, and grace. Do you trust God? Do you have faith that He will bring glory and good out of the bad things that happen in your life? It is by believing that God has a plan/purpose for you that healing is possible. God can use divorce, death, loneliness, sorrow, and pain all for good. Trust God, and you will find strength, hope, peace, and love.