Why Me God? Why Me?
You’ve prayed for God’s will. You’re trying to live for him. Yet you encounter pain and grief like you’ve never imagined.
Like Job in the Old Testament, you have no idea what you have done to deserve such suffering and grief. People’s pat answers can’t even begin to answer your questions or help you to make sense of your suffering. All those sermons about God’s love seem shallow, even mocking.
You had believed that because you have conscientiously tried to follow Jesus that some how or other that you’d be immune from cancer, from terminal illness, from seemingly unfair suffering, heart break, unemployment or whatever. You trusted God to protect you for this.
A big challenge to our faith is the religious problem of evil. We can discuss moral evil, natural evil, the amount of evil, the apparent purposelessness of some evils and the like. But such conversations are abstract, impersonal. What we cry out for is some way of understanding why feeling that some how or other God has short changed me. It just doesn’t seem fair.
John Feinberg was overly conscientious about doing God’s will, particularly in relation to choosing a wife. After much soul searching, prayer, reading of the bible, seeking advice from godly people, John and Pat married. Their world was shattered the day Pat was diagnosed with an incurable, terminal, genetically transmitted disease.
John and Pat tell their story in the book: Where is God? A personal Story of Finding God in Grief and Suffering. They have stayed in our home and we in there’s. John explains that what he needed was not the intellectual answers that ascribe all types of suffering to the entrance of sin into the human race through the rebellion of Adam and Eve against God. Ultimately evil does have its origin in the fall of man and the rebellion of Satan.
What John and Pat required above all else was the reassurance and comfort of God’s love. To feel they mattered to God. ‘Cast all your anxiety on God for it matters to him about you.’ 1 Peter 5:7. Personal repentance and faith in the Lord Jesus does not mean we are immune from suffering. What it does mean is that God can take that ‘evil’ and use it in a way that benefits you and I.
How do I know? Jesus suffered and was put to death because of evil powerful men. But that injustice God turned into the means through which he can forgive our sin. And that is God’s promise to us. Not to keep us is some sanitise environment in which we are protected from grief and suffering, but to walk with us through it and use it in a way that personally benefits us.
The challenge is: “Can I trust God with my suffering?” Jesus did.
Dr Keith Graham