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How an All-Loving God Can Allow So Much Hurt

It’s times like these when I feel that the argument against Christianity could be at its strongest. When things happen that don’t have an excuse or a causation that can easily be given blame.

It’s age-old, the question of why. Why does this all-knowing, unconditional-loving God allow anything to happen that would harm those he loves? With his supposed purposeful plan, how can tragedy and heartache and damage and pain be an intentional part of it?

To be completely frank, I’m writing this post without an answer. It’s incredibly hard for me to find the words to say and I feel like I’m not going to do this topic justice. Because, in all honesty, there’s no way I can claim to understand the thoughts and actions of my God. But he doesn’t intend for me to. For me to try to understand him would be for me to try to rise to his level of power. And if I were to try to do that, I would be setting myself up for the most tremendous fall.

I think what it all boils down to is choice. To make someone follow you is one thing. It creates resentment and rebellion. It creates animosity. To give someone the choice to follow you fosters respect. It allows for the leader to be proven worthy and the follower to be persistent and passionate and self-motivated. It allows the root of the follower-leader relationship to be love.

To give someone the choice when you know what could befall on them on the other side of things? That is sacrificial. That is trusting us more than we could ever deserve.

To follow our Lord, to love him daily… that is a choice. That is something that we have to decide upon in every situation, on every day. And that is something we fail at repeatedly. We lessen his power, we deny his love, we hurt those around us and let our flaws take hold in us. While the Lord is intending this world to be a place he nurtures, a place where he is prevalent in all things, it is also home to the enemy. And the enemy is a constant force that we alone cannot reckon with.

We make the choice to go against the goodness that is our Lord and we are inadvertently letting the enemy in. And this enemy isn’t complacent or satisfied with us making our own choices as our Lord is. This enemy is powerful. This enemy destroys.

I honestly don’t believe that my Lord would put such destruction in his plan. However, I do believe that he would love us through our bad decisions, as a parent would their child. And he lets us make those decisions, learn the hard way, the way we need to.  He lets us realize through the pain that he is the source of peace.

In giving us that choice, he knows what we will let the enemy do. He knows what we will cause. But he still gives us the choice, because what is the acceptance of this great love without realizing just how worth it that it really is?

Our God doesn’t stop loving us in the rougher times. He isn’t taking his anger out on us; in sending his son to die, he let go of that anger and replaced it with forgiveness. He’s accepting the fact that we have a choice in following him. He’s accepting the consequences of that choice. And he’s here to pick up the pieces and rebuild them stronger than ever along the way.

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  • I’d love to just sit down with a cup of coffee and chat with you about this because it’s SUCH a difficult topic. Something that every Christian wrestles with. What I’ve realized is that in order for me to have a relationship with God-one that is intimate and impenetrable- I have to know deep down to my core that he is good. There cannot be any doubt of that or else our faith has cracks and can easily shatter under pressure.

  • I think you hit on it so well at the start – we don’t know the answer. God’s ways are a mystery to us. We had a few messages recently at Church to encourage us in trials and hardships and one of the things I took away was that ‘God never wastes a hurt’. We don’t know why He does things but we can have faith that He had a plan in it all.

    When I was struggling with something I lamented to a friend that sometimes, just sometimes, it would be good to know what God’s plan is. She pointed out that if that were the case, we wouldn’t need faith. Sometimes all we can do is have faith and cling to Him in the worst moments.