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There have been times in my life where I simply could not see what God was doing. Have you ever felt that way? I think we all, if we are honest, have had times where we have sat back and wondered. God, what are you doing? Life is a fragile thing, and sometimes we get so caught up in our circumstances that we cannot see God. We wonder if He is working. We wonder if He hears us. We wonder if He even cares. These feelings are very real, but they are even more troubling when they come during pain and suffering. In this world nothing confounds us more than when we are in the middle of some great tragedy, and we can’t see or hear God. Pain and suffering are real, and a part of the human experience. The problem arises when we try and understand why. Why would God allow this to happen? It doesn’t make sense that He would allow this to happen to us. What are we supposed to do when God does not make sense? How are we supposed to respond?
What if I told you that when bad things happen that it is not necessarily because of sin in your life? What if I told you that you that you are just as precious to God in the middle of suffering as you are in the good times? What if I told you that God is moving and is going to be glorified through you? When things are at there worst we need to cling to the truth of God’s word that we are just much His children in times of drought as we are in times of plenty. You see God was with the Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego before they went down to the fiery furnace. He was with Daniel while he was still praying in his room, before he was thrown into the Lion’s den. He wasn’t revealed until they were cast into their most helpless of situations. He was there when they couldn’t hear him, see him, and it just didn’t make sense. Tim Keller wrote “One of the main ways we move from abstract knowledge about God to a personal encounter with Him as a living reality is through the furnace of affliction.”
Whenever you go through times of pain and suffering, don’t lose heart. The God who was with you before is not waiting on the other side. He is right there with you, and He has already prepared the way out. A way that will bring Him the most glory and be better than you could have ever imagined. It may not be what you expected but trust His purpose. Remember who you are in Him. You are His child.
1 John 3:1-3 “What marvelous love the Father has extended to us! Just look at it—we’re called children of God! That’s who we really are. But that’s also why the world doesn’t recognize us or take us seriously, because it has no idea who he is or what he’s up to. But friends, that’s exactly who we are: children of God. And that’s only the beginning. Who knows how we’ll end up! What we know is that when Christ is openly revealed, we’ll see him—and in seeing him, become like him. All of us who look forward to his Coming stay ready, with the glistening purity of Jesus’ life as a model for our own.