27 February 2014
I was having a conversation with a friend this evening and we talked about the common questions people ask about suffering in the world.
I honestly have no complete answer to it if the question is why there is suffering in the world. I suppose we can account it to sin that permeates the fabric of the world. But suffering comes in many forms and there will not always be an answer to every form of suffering. That is probably one of the biggest reason why people still debate over the existence of God.
So my friend said, “What difference in terms of suffering then would there be if there is no God.” The answer – probably not much if one believes there is no God. ” What difference in terms of suffering then would there be if there is a God”. The answer – well there doesn’t seem to be evidence of God really making sure no one suffers – but then there is Hope that something better would come.
When every human effort has been made to change a suffering circumstance but failure is the only result then there is nothing else to hope for but a miracle. Perhaps that is why God appears to do “miracles” in the bible and miracles are seen as evidence of His existence.
But if miracles do not happen, when tragedies still strike, when nothing makes sense from suffering, then at least there is hope that God will one day redeem all that has been lost to suffering. If we are looking to know why suffering still exists despite the sincerest prayer, perhaps God is saying that He will make sense of it all one day, but in the meantime He is asking us to put our hope in Christ.
God is a God of Hope. Our spirits seek out hope in the midst of suffering and trials. It is our instinct, it is our nature to hope for better things. We are offended when we see hopelessness in the world, we feel offended that a God of Hope can allow hopelessness to exist. Sometimes though, it’s in the midst of hopelessness when God is found. It may not happen to everyone, but to those who have received hope in God, i believe they also become the hope for the hopeless. Just as those who have found faith in God, are to become faith for the faithless.
I do not know why suffering exists but i do know that i have hope in a God who says “With man this is impossible, but with God, all things are possible”. What i do know is that i am also called to be a hope to suffering and when i bring hope, i bring in God, because God is a God of hope. Rather than seeing an absence of God in the midst of hopelessness i choose to see an opportunity for me to be a messenger of hope and a conduit by which the presence of God will fill the hopelessness.
Lord God, i pray that i can bring hope into the lives of the hopeless. I pray that the bringing of this hope, however small, will grow for Your Name. Let me be hopeful in all things and thereby invite Your presence into hopeless situations. Let me live out this hope in love and remember that love never fails, but always believes, always perseveres, always hopes, always protects.