Getting God Off the Hook?
When bad things happen and tragedies occur, many people feel like they need to get God off the hook. One of the ways they try to do that is by saying things like, "God didn't have anything to do with this tragedy," or "the devil is still the prince of this world."
I remember after the 9/11 attacks a pastor was on the radio, and the host was asking him for some answers and explanations to help us make sense of such evil, death, and tragedy. The pastor explained that we need to remember that Satan is still the prince of this world. I think he had good intentions, but the reality is that teaching like this is not helpful to those who are encountering tragedy.
If God is limited in the bad things, that means God is limited in his ability to heal and redeem you.
What you're saying with that kind of teaching is that God is limited. And if God is limited in the bad things, that means God is limited in his ability to heal and redeem you. You're saying that his arm only stretches so long. So it may not stretch all the way to your heart, to your sorrow, and to your brokenness.
The Comfort of God's Absolute Sovereignty
For me, one of the most comforting things in surviving and recovering from the death of my child was knowing that God was completely and fully in control in his death. Before he created the world, my God had marked the number of days that my son would live.
That means that his life was complete. That means that his death was not random; it was not accidental. That means that it has meaning and purpose.
And it also means that God is in control of my redemption and my healing.
In the early days, the pain and sorrow of losing my son were so intense that I could not focus on anything beyond daily survival. But hope prevailed.
We can’t jump straight to It’s alright. God will be good. We can be sure he will, but that’s probably not where we should start.
Depression can be quite as fiery a trial as any other. The good news is that God does indeed hear the cry of the afflicted.