12 Mar 2015

Taking the Good With the Bad

Why do bad things happen to good people?  If you have been asked this question you probably have secretly wondered about the answer yourself.  As a Christian it is a puzzling thought to wrap your mind around.  When asked you may be inclined to avoid the answer.  Recently I was faced with that very question and without hesitation was able to offer a response.  I specifically chose the word “offer” because knowing how sensitive this subject is to believers and non-believers alike, I recognize that a person has to believe in order to accept.

Whether it is the devastation of illness, broken relationships, heartaches and disappointments, or financial distress our God is omnipotent (all powerful) and omniscient (all knowing).  So that solidifies the fact nothing gets past Him or is beyond His control.  That’s what makes the enemy so angry, and keeps him in his place. He can ONLY do what God allows, and what God allows we can rest assured there is purpose in it and our ultimate outcome will be in our best interest.  It is often said that our best lessons are learned through the difficult passages of hardship.  Does Jesus frown on us for not wanting to go through difficulty?  Not at all. Remember even Jesus said just before His betrayal and the events leading up to His crucifixion, “. . . . “O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me . . .” 

These powerful words spoken in St. Matthew 26: 39 by our Savior will rest on our hearts and minds like none other.   Yet it is written proof that there were some things even Jesus would have chosen not to endure.  But it is the final words of that same scripture that make all the difference and seal the future of our Savior for all eternity.  Jesus concludes His cry out to God by saying “nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt.”   Jesus knew that this had to happen in order that the prophecy of the scriptures would be fulfilled.

There is an ultimate plan, purpose, and journey for your life.  It would be ideal if we could punch our names into a personal life GPS (navigation system) and know that by following that plan we would arrive at the desired destination without a hitch.  Well that’s not exactly as impossible as you might think!  The word of God is indeed our GPS system and while we may hit a few bumps in the road, experience a few detours (at least from our point of view), if followed we will reach our destination.

So why does God allow bad things to happen to good people if He has such a wonderful plan for our lives. I believe that it encompasses three basic things:

  1. Our lives and our bodies belong to God.  We have been given the gift of life and it must be used and cared for wisely.  Sometimes we just need a reminder that we are not our own and we must take better care of that which we’ve been given.
  2. Sometimes God will use us to demonstrate to the devil and the world that He is in total control.  He and He alone has that power and shares it with no one!  There are some lines that the enemy will never be allowed to cross!
  3. Our experiences in life both good and bad are designed to increase our faith and draw us into closer relationship with Him.

“Beloved, do not think it strange concerning the
fiery trial which is to try you, as though some
strange thing happened to you;
but rejoice to the extent that you
partake of Christ’s sufferings, that when His glory
is revealed, you may also be glad with exceeding joy.”
I Peter 4: 12, 13