By Pastor Bobby Schuller
“When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze.”
In the movie, the main character played by Jim Carrey is mad at God so God decides to make this human God for one day. Of course, when Carry starts to deal with prayer, everything goes horribly wrong. He goes crazy when he gets all these voices in his head, prayer requests from everybody worldwide. So when he asks for the requests to be in letter form, then post-it notes, then e-mails, instantly the room fills up with letters and post-it notes, and then his computer fills up with millions of e-mails. To keep up, he replies “yes” to all the e-mailed requests, and the world goes into turmoil when everyone gets their prayed-for answer, which is not necessarily what would have been God’s answer.
In the same way, we cannot see the whole world the way God does, and why suffering is necessary for life even to have meaning. Have you ever read a good story without a villain, without a challenge, without a struggle, or without a trial? If we’re human beings, we hate suffering. But, the very fact that we hate suffering is one of the absolute proofs of God. God hates suffering, he wants to overcome it, and he wants to use human beings to do it.
Prayer: Dear Lord, I have sometimes wanted to be you. When I see a person suffer, I immediately want them to be out of their pain. But you know what’s best for us all, and I want to be available to help you help those in need. Show me the way. Amen.
Reflection: Have you seen or experienced suffering and wondered why God had let it happen?