Are you trying to make sense of your life and wonder if you even matter to God? Maybe you are facing a seemingly insignificant issue, yet it has still left you feeling a bit disillusioned. You are asking God whether it matters to Him at all. Are some of the events that we face only a byproduct of circumstances that are totally unnoticed by God?
Our family has experienced three heart transplants, two bouts of very aggressive cancers, and severe multiple chemical sensitivities with two of our children. I have struggled with many questions and experienced many emotions as I have watched, in horror, as my child was suffering and in pain. At one point, my daughter looked like a burn victim, and her tongue would swell to the point of almost choking her, due to her severe allergies. It broke my heart, and I wept many tears! I asked God to show me whether He was still in control, and if He even cared about what we were going through. (In my blog next week, I will share what God’s response was to this desperate cry.)
I believe, in much the same way, God’s heart is broken, and He weeps with us when we suffer and weep. During our circumstances, I was helpless to do anything to change the situations. However, we knew that God is all powerful and still in control. Sometimes, our greatest struggle is knowing that God could change things, but it appears like He isn’t. Does this mean He doesn’t care, or could it be that He sees a greater picture that we can’t see? It’s important for us to understand that God hates our pain. It grieves His heart when He sees you, His precious child, facing pain of any kind. He has nail prints in His hand as the result of His suffering. He has them so we can achieve a rich and meaningful life here on earth, as well as a joyful and pain free life in Heaven.
As you recall in the story of Job, Satan can bring devastation and loss to God’s children. From an earthly perspective, we could blame Job’s situation on natural catastrophes, injustice by the Chaldeans, or the work of the enemy. (Job 1:13-19) However, we give Satan way too much credit! If we look deeper, we can see that Satan was only allowed to do what God gave him permission to do. I believe that God was still in control, and He showed not only Job, but also Satan, that He still writes the last chapter. Satan was trying to destroy Job’s faith, along with the faith of other believers who were watching. Since Job responded correctly, God turned it around, and Job’s faith was strengthened. Job’s godly example has affected millions of people for God’s honor and glory.
In Luke 4:18, Jesus said, “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted…” Although God weeps with us and hates to see us in pain, He focuses so much more on our spiritual condition and our eternal existence, than on our broken hearts. Why does a loving God allow us to experience the pain and consequences of sin? I believe that one of God’s greatest purposes is to prepare us for an eternal life with Him. Some other important purposes are for us to see our sins as repulsive, learn to love God more fully, and depend on Him to a greater extent. In the process of our purification, God wants to make ministry out of the circumstances and trials of our lives. Although your suffering may not have any meaning in itself, just one glimpse of God’s purpose can suddenly give your suffering significant meaning!
God continues to allow us to experience the sting of sin while we are on our journey to Heaven. If we never felt this sting, we wouldn’t feel the need to be set free. When we get to Heaven, I believe we will be thanking and praising God for each trial and pain that we experienced here on earth. Only then, will we see how each difficulty was the best thing that could ever have happened to us.
When we finally get to Heaven, I believe we will embrace each other and bask in the reality and wondrous joy of our glorious future. We will have no more suffering or disappointments. We will marvel as we see that God, indeed, was working all things for our good and for His glory! God said that He will wipe away all of our tears, but until then, He continues to weep with us.