Suffering and a loving God?

Suffering and a loving God? April 23, 2023


Walking through Suffering

There’s so much pain and suffering in this world. That happy person you are envious of might be carrying a pain you are not aware of.   And many lose their faith as a result of unbearable pain in their lives.

One of my fellow Patheos authors writes:

People who are sick and hurt and dying want rest, healing and hope.
They need comfort right where it hurts the most. But what happens when the religion you offer them is something that does not even seem to care about what they’re going through?

I agree that there must always be a place for teaching about suffering, self-sacrifice and the eternal punishments of hell. But if these are taught without the sweetness of love and the gentleness of a kind God, what would it all sound like?

It would sound as though you are coercing people to believe through threat. It would sound as though the message you’re preaching is not about salvation but slavery.

Rather than loving God, it teaches them to be angry at God!  Read the rest 

A while ago I wrote that fortunately suffering  is also a season in which many find God. In your pain God desires to draw near to you.

His presence can be a real comfort. Perhaps you feel that you don’t deserve to come to God now when you have ignored him for years. The truth is that He is eagerly looking for you like the father of the prodigal son and will come running towards you when you take steps towards him, even if he still feels distant from you. If you turn to him, it may take time and the journey may be hard but ultimately you will be reunited with him.

He is calling you “Come home to me”.  He understands your pain. He truly is the God of compassion.

“Troubled times awaken [people] out of their haunted sleep of spiritual self-sufficiency into a serious search for the divine . . . It is an exaggeration to say that no one finds God unless suffering comes into their lives—but it is not a big one.” (Tim Keller)

That is quite a strong statement. It seems we need to experience something of the suffering seen at the cross in order to experience the power and hope found in the resurrection.  Read the rest


Read some more from my blog about suffering

Five Truths about Suffering

Hope in Suffering

Giving Thanks IN Your Suffering, Not FOR It

Easter Saturday – a day to pause and reflect. Written with help from ChatGPT

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