Why does God allow suffering or need?
There are no accidents with God. No “oops”! He is never up in heaven wringing His hands. If you don’t learn anything else from your reading and study of scripture, you can’t help but see that God has a plan. He patiently, purposefully, and calmly brings that plan to pass.
From the 1st Chapter in Luke, we learn that Elizabeth and Zacharias were childless and had been in great pain for many years because of it. Was Elizabeth and Zachariah’s deep suffering over childlessness a part of God’s plan? Yes. Does that mean God wanted them to suffer? Did He get some sort of pleasure from their suffering? Absolutely not. Then why did He allow it? Because He certainly could have given them a child long before He did, right?
I believe God could stop all suffering right this minute if He chose. But if He did, He would have to destroy all sin and all the results of sin – and once He did that, the world as we know it would be gone, and there would be no more chances for anyone to believe. It would be finished.
So, no, He doesn’t like it when we suffer. But, yes, He does continue to allow it. And YES!!! There is a reason! There is a purpose. There is an end-result which we will someday be glad of.
Someone, somewhere, needs to get ready to meet Jesus, and yours or my suffering may play a part in that, just like Elizabeth and Zacharias’ suffering played a part in the perfect timing for the Savior to be introduced to His world.
Some of us may not be sure who was praying for us before we came to genuine faith in Jesus. But many of us do remember who it was who told us about Jesus, or prayed with us as we gave our life to Him, or was preaching or teaching when we knew we must bend our knee before Him.
My Dad came to true belief in Jesus when I was 13. His testimony of giving his life totally to God burned like a brand on my heart and mind. My sister, Susan, became a follower of Jesus about that same time, and I know she prayed for me. Pastor Dick Buck, was preaching 4 years later, when I was 17, when I realized Jesus had actually died for me. That’s when I believed in Him and gave my life to Him.
My Dad, my sister, my Pastor – all of them were at the right place at the right time for me, getting me ready for the relationship with God which changed me into the person God always intended for me to be.
I am struck with this: My sister came to know Christ at the time He chose for her. My Dad came to know Christ at the time He chose for him. My Pastor preached the message needed to reach my heart because Jesus had gotten him ready to preach that message at that time and in that place when I was ready to hear it.
When Jesus called me to faith in Him it wasn’t an accident of timing. He knew exactly what I needed to hear and when I needed to hear it, not just for me….but also so that my time of salvation would have the most impact on someone else.
Our joy in meeting and believing in Jesus is amazing…but it isn’t just for us.
“And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.” Romans 8:28