Ask Your Preacher

Ask Your Preacher

“Hard Times”

Categories: GOD, RELATIONSHIPS, SELF
     I have had a very tough life since childhood.  I am thirty-three years old now and still find life difficult.  Could you please tell me why God allows this to happen?

Sincerely,
Constantly Struggling

Dear Constantly Struggling,

Some people suffer greatly, and others face relatively few problems.  All suffering is a consequence of sin in this world, but there are several reasons that someone might have a greater portion of trials.

  1. We reap what is sown (Gal 6:7-8).  The choices we make have consequences in this life – and in the next.  What people do affects them and those around them that they come in contact with.  When we behave godly, certain things happen; when we behave sinfully, other things happen.  That is a universal principle of life.  If a woman drinks while she is pregnant or a child is neglected and malnourished because of ungodly parents – they will suffer the consequences of the choices their parents make.  Some children face health issues that were totally avoidable if the parents had simply lived moral lives.  Satan is sowing disaster wherever he can and we are all affected by our own choices and the choices of others around us.
  2. Sometimes bad things simply happen because they happen.  Job suffered greatly, and his children died, but it wasn’t his (or their) fault.  Job hadn’t done anything wrong, nor had his kids.  It all happened because Satan wanted to do evil (Job 1:6).  As long as we live in this world of sin, there will be troubles.  Sometimes, there isn’t anyone at fault… just time and chance wreaking havoc in a sinful world (Eccl 9:11).
  3. Sometimes people suffer so that God can be glorified.  Jesus’ disciples asked Him why a certain man had been born blind, and Jesus answered, “So that God’s works might be revealed in him.” (Jhn 9:1-3)  This man’s ailment provided an opportunity for God to show His glory.  There are times that we suffer, so God can teach us and teach others through our pain (Eccl 7:2-3).

This world isn’t fair – if it were, it would be heaven.  Instead, we live in a fallen world where man has been exiled from paradise.  This world is not our home; christians await a better world (Heb 11:16).  When Adam and Eve sinned, they introduced sin and death into this life, but God designed this world perfectly and gives us hope for a better future in Jesus (1 Cor 15:22).