The problem of pain and suffering in the world is the number one question that drives people away from God, even though it doesn’t have to. The question goes something like this: “If God is all-loving and all-powerful, why would He allow bad things to happen to good people?” The argument goes that God cannot be both all-loving and all-powerful because pain and suffering exist in the world. Too many people have utilized this argument to walk away from God.
For most of us, however, this question is much more personal. “Why did God allow that bad thing to happen to you?” Why did God allow your parents to get divorced? Why did God allow that man to abuse you for so long? Why did God allow your grandparent to die unexpectedly? Why were you the one that was cheated on? Why were you the one that got cancer? The short answer is simple, yet unsatisfying: the reason bad things happen to good people is because we live in a broken and sin-filled world. Hurt people hurt people, and no one is exempt. But God can still be a good God even with pain and suffering in the world.
Think about it this way: you probably consider yourself a good parent, and yet you willingly chose to bring a child into this world, knowing that this child would experience pain, heartbreak, sickness, disease and ultimately death. And yet you’re still a good parent. In the same way, God is still our good loving Heavenly Father even in the midst of pain and suffering. If you or someone you love is walking through the dark valley of suffering and hurt, here are four next steps to help you walk through that valley.