God is a good God, yet life is hard
You hear this question over and over again, “How can God be good when there is so much suffering and evil in the world?” There are earthquakes, tsunamis, tornados and ongoing violence and poverty, which we have to deal with on an ongoing basis.
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People are losing their jobs every day. People are getting divorced, separated and have suffered the loss of family members, and so much more. So where is God during all of these trials, and how can we have faith in God, when things seem like they are just getting worse?
Have you turned on one of those preaching shows, where he says, “come to Jesus, and all of your problems will be solved?” No, it is not true – it does not work like that. Life is an uphill battle. That preacher is lying through his teeth.
Different religions believe different things about suffering – Hindu, Buddhist, and Atheist. The religion of the new age believes that you have created your circumstances by a certain thought pattern. Jesus Christ says our brain is not a remote control. We are not a God.
In 1 Peter, Chapter 1, we are reminded that heaven is not our real home, but we have heaven to look forward to. There will be no more suffering there.
Christians often decide to turn away from God. Have a look at Genesis 1 and 2, where the Bible quotes how God created a world, which was filled with joy, kindness and love. However, the relationship with God and creation was destroyed with human rebellion.
How do you rebel against God?
- Gal 6 –You break natural law – this will take you by surprise. You may think you are better than someone else.
- You break moral laws – for example, you may abuse substances.
- The sin of other people – disobeying your parents, for example. This always comes back to you.
What about earthquakes and tsunamis and tornadoes? There is a little taste of this in Gen. 18, with floods and fires.
So many people have come to God during suffering. Do you think that sometimes God allows pain, so that people will turn to him? “It’s a blessing in disguise” – and he turns it around.
For Christians as well – you must have asked the question – why is this happening to me? Where is God?
Jonathan Edwards talks about how people think of God judging him. He says that most people want him to come and live their lives for a while – go through their sufferings. Ask him to lift up his hands, and you will see the marks of true suffering.
Here is the good part about suffering
When you have trials, your faith is tested, and this creates perseverance. You can choose to lose faith or you can grow it.
“Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance.”
In Exodus, Moses leads the Israelites into the desert, and for three days, they could not find any water. They were complaining like anything. When they did come across water, they were so excited, but they refused to drink it because it was so bitter. 
They started blaming Moses –the blame game. This was all Moses’ fault. Their faith was tested and they began to lose it. But Moses prays, throws a stick in the water, and they have nice sweet water.
Self pity will destroy you. You know when people talk about “the good old days” – things were cheaper, life was better, better political leader. However, you only remember the good points, and you are not remembering the struggles you had to go through.
Again, God promises to get rid of suffering. An inheritance is kept in heaven for you. This may be wishful thinking for some people, however if you are a true believer, hopefully you will think of it as faith in God.