Thursday, December 23, 2010

Hurt So Good

“They disciplined us for a short time as seemed right to them, but he does so for our benefit, in order that we may share in his holiness.” Hebrews 12: 10

Many non-believers, and even some faithful, have a hard time rectifying the concept of a God who loves us with all the suffering they see about them in our world. Or perhaps we can accept it until we have to undergo some kind of trial of our own and then we wonder where God is at. It is hard for us to understand that while God does not WILL suffering, that He sometimes allows it or uses it for our ultimate good. And that He promises to bring good out of all suffering.

So why does God not stop all suffering? How come the almighty and all-powerful Lord does not intervene in the world of men and prevent suffering before it occurs, instead of just bringing good from it? Doesn’t it make more sense to not suffer? Some people would argue that there can never be good from suffering. And some Christians would even say that suffering is a direct result of one not being faithful enough to God, as if He were some kind of puppet or vending machine that has to do what we want if we pull the right strings or put in the right amount of change. But is there never a time when suffering is necessary for us to achieve a greater good? I believe there is.

Recently a woman I know told me how her 2 year old was diagnosed with diabetes. The poor little guy has to get 8-10 finger pricks per day to test his blood sugar level and he has to get an insulin shot about 4 times per day. The most painful thing for the mother to go through is that her little son does not understand why she has to hurt him all these times each day. In fact, she told me how it breaks her heart that as she gets ready to do the test or give the shot he begs her not to and promises to be a good boy so she doesn’t keep hurting him. In his small, limited mind, he thinks she is hurting him to punish him. And yet we all know that it is LOVE that compels her to keep pricking him every day. We know that without those finger pricks and insulin shots, he would get very sick and even die. And we don’t think God might have to allow the same for us sometimes?

What if we were heading down a path that led to spiritual sickness or eternal death and God in His mercy, allowed something painful to happen in our lives to wake us up or to help us become more dependent on Him? What if it was only through some kind of suffering that our souls would be saved from hell? I have stood in front of a group of parents and asked them if they HAD to choose, would they rather their child suffer and die from cancer at 10 years old and go to heaven forever, or live in perfect health until 100 but go to hell forever and EVERY one said that in this situation they would rather have their child go to heaven than go to hell.

Like the little child in the story above, we often times see with a limited mind and vision about what is happening to us. But God sees the big picture and He is asking us to place all of our trust in Him, even when He does not prevent or remove suffering from our lives. He wants us to trust that even then, He loves us and that He is going to bring good out of our pain. We may not see it or realize it while on this earth, but we will SEE it someday.

Jesus I trust in You. Amen

No comments:

Post a Comment