This has to be one of the most difficult questions we can ask.
Why do children get cancer?
Why does a young woman fight for her life while an elderly woman prays to die?
Why do some people have so many trials and others have so few?
Why do brilliant minds get dementia?
Why does one person walk away from an accident unhurt and another is paralyzed for life?
Volumes have been written on this topic and I have been enlightened especially by the works of C.S. Lewis and Philip Yancey. But because neither of them is available today to write this blog 🙂 , I’d like to share three reasons God may be allowing suffering in your life or the life of someone you love. These reasons are based on the book For Those Who Hurt by Charles Swindoll, copyright 1977, published by Multnomah Press.
Why God Allows Suffering in Our Lives
- That we might be prepared to comfort others.
All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is our merciful Father and the source of all comfort. He comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort others. When they are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us. 2 Corinthians 1:3-4 (NLT)
2. That we might not trust in ourselves.
We think you ought to know, dear brothers and sisters, about the trouble we went through in the province of Asia. We were crushed and overwhelmed beyond our ability to endure, and we thought we never would live through it. In fact, we expected to die. But as a result, we stopped relying on ourselves and learned to rely only on God, who raises the dead. We have placed our confidence in him and he will continue to rescue us. 2 Corinthians 1:8-10 (NLT)
3. That we might learn to give thanks in all things.
And you are helping us by praying for us. Then many people will give thanks because God has graciously answered so many prayers for our safety. 2 Corinthians 1:11 (NLT)
I certainly can’t make sense of your/your loved one’s suffering for you, but I hope you will ask God if one of these is might be”the reason” for the suffering. I believe that knowing our suffering has a purpose can make it easier to bear. Perhaps Shannon Wexelberg’s words in the music video will resonate with your weary heart: If I had my way every time I called to Heaven, would I know Him like I know Him today? While I’ve waited so long, He’s been working all along…Could it be He is using all this in my life? Could it be this prayer I’ve prayed is not quite what He’s after? And I will find He’s done a different kind of miracle in my life.
(If the music video below doesn’t automatically load, please copy, paste and click on this link to enjoy: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yk-omRWod7c )