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Understanding Why a Loving God Allows Suffering

Hebrews 12:11

Now no chastening seems to be joyful for the present, but painful; nevertheless, afterward it yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.


Today, I wish to share with you a message of faith, resilience, and hope. A message that seeks to answer a question that has crossed every believer's mind at one point or another: Why does God allow suffering?


The scriptures tell us in Romans 8:28, “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” This is a powerful verse, yet it is one that can be difficult to grasp when we are in the throes of pain and adversity.


At first glance, it seems paradoxical, even absurd, to suggest that pain and hardship can serve a beneficial role in our lives. However, our heavenly Father's ways are not our ways. His thoughts are not our thoughts. His viewpoint is eternal, while ours is temporal, most cannot perceive the bigger, long-term plan at work. Isaiah 57:1: “The righteous perish, and no man lays it to heart: and merciful men are taken away, none consider that the righteous are spared from future evil.”


Our Good Shepherd sometimes allows us to walk through the valley of shadows, not because He delights in our suffering, but because He wants to strengthen and refine us. Like a goldsmith purifies gold through fire to remove its impurities, God allows us to endure trials to develop our character, deepen our faith, and draw us closer to Him.


In the book of Job, we see a man who suffered immense loss and pain. Job did not understand why God allowed such calamity to befall him. Yet, in his affliction, he clung to his faith and declared, "Though He slay me, yet will I trust Him" (Job 13:15). Job’s experience reminds us that while we may not understand the 'why' behind our suffering, we can trust in God's sovereignty and goodness.


Dear brothers and sisters, suffering is not a sign of God's absence or displeasure. Instead, it often serves as a divine tool, guiding us towards spiritual growth and transformation. Through trials, we learn to depend on God, to find our strength in Him, and to experience His peace that surpasses all understanding.


Remember the words of Apostle Paul, "For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all" (2 Corinthians 4:17). Our earthly struggles, no matter how painful, are temporary. They are shaping us for an eternal glory that outshines any hardship we face here on earth.


In conclusion, beloved, I urge you not to view your suffering as a punishment or an abandonment by God. Rather, see it as part of a larger, divine plan woven by the loving hands of our Father. A plan that is refining you, preparing you, and leading you towards the richness of eternal life with Him.


God is with you. He sees your pain, hears your cries, and promises to be your refuge and strength. So, when suffering comes, do not despair. Instead, let it draw you closer to God, deepen your faith, and transform you into a more resilient, compassionate, and Christ-like individual. May the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Amen.