Why do bad things happen?

In light of recent events, particularly in Australia and New Zealand, I thought this would be a pertinent time to address a difficult topic – why do bad things happen, or more specifically, why does God allow bad things to happen?

Some things can be put down to direct consequence of human actions. Gun violence, trafficking, abuse and assault, among other tragedies happen when humans perform these acts. When God gives us free will, some people choose to do horrible things. This kind of evil is pretty cut and dry, but it doesn’t cover everything. Because a lot of times no-one is at fault. When these types of tragedies occur, it can be difficult to see God. How could a good and loving God let this happen?

Natural disasters, disabilities, sickness – we can’t usually blame this on any person. If God is all good, all knowing and all powerful, then why does he allow suffering from these tragedies? This is the reality of living in an evil world, totally corrupted by sin. I don’t have all the answers, but I do know it is not God’s will for us to suffer. We are his children and he loves us! When these things happen however, God still has a plan and it is his will that we rely on him for strength and help, and that we use everything for his glory.

There is a well-meaning saying that ‘everything happens for a reason.’ It is meant to comfort and give hope that everything will be alright. I think this idea does more harm than good sometimes. A lot of people don’t recover from illnesses. Stuff happens and there is pain, and there is suffering. We must acknowledge that for own sake. We can’t stop an earthquake from happening, and it will cause destruction without discriminating. But that doesn’t mean we just ignore bad things because they’re “normal” in this life. It is okay to be angry or to grieve for a time, you do not need to constantly look on the bright side and pretend that everything is okay. In fact, it is good to despise what is evil. It is good to hate things that cause such devastation. Getting fired up about the wrong in this world, fuels our desire to fix all that we can!

I do not wish to cheapen death, abuse, rape, torture, slave trade, murder or anything of this nature. When I finally get to meet God, I look forward to hearing how he used suffering in this life for good. Right now though, I just want to remind you all God has a plan, and you can’t stop it from happening. He can bring good out of bad, and build us up to be stronger through our struggles and trials. He wants us to lean on him when we feel weak and helpless. God is with you at every step. He sees your pain, and he is cheering you on to make the best of the hand you have been dealt. Keep fighting and do not give up. Evil is here now, but one day it will be gone. When that day comes, and Jesus returns, all will be made right again.

Stay safe,

Stephanie

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