It is not only a few times that tragedies have come my way and left me questioning why. Why God? Why me? Why now? And God never answers this, nor does He explain.
My restless mind, of course, would not have peace without answers; so it would go on a long train of thought trying to reason it out itself. It would go far and wide thinking back to all the sins I’ve committed. Perhaps I deserved it? Yet I knew that God is not a God of karma, but of grace. I knew too well of His daily, renewed mercies to say that God either orchestrated or allowed a tragedy to happen just to punish me. So other times I’d think, “Maybe God didn’t have anything to do with it, but He just didn’t care enough to stop it.” I would feel forsaken and left in despair. But soon I’d remember all that suffering Jesus went through on the cross. I’d run out of reasons to be left with just a big WHY?
God never promised that if we become Christians, bad things would never happen to us: we live in a broken world. What He did promise rather was that He would be there through it all. Through the good and the bad, through the beautiful and the ugly, through the joy and the sorrow, through the smooth and the hard times. He would always hold our hands. But that is only if we allow Him to – if we choose to also grab onto Him.
God never answered my ‘why’s?’ because it was the wrong question. In tough times, what I needed was not reason, but love. Reason wouldn’t change anything, but love could heal my heart. I didn’t need an explanation, I needed comfort, I needed someone to hold my hand and tell me that it was all well.
It was after several unanswered ‘why’s?’ that I realized God would never answer them. It wasn’t only me. There are several cases in the Bible that God didn’t explain Himself. The book of Habakkuk is one of my favorite examples. Habakkuk, right from the first chapter is asking God:
‘Why do you make me look at injustice?’
‘Why do you tolerate wrongdoing?’
Habakkuk could not understand how such a good God could stay silent as the wicked prospered and justice was perverted. This is the same question that arises in the book of Job when a blameless man goes through so much tragedy. Why?
Learning God’s response to both stories changed my life. I encourage you to study it yourself, quite a journey! But if I were to summarize it, God replied, “Why should I, God, explain myself to you, man? Who are you to even dare ask?”
In fact, to Habakkuk, God didn’t only evade the question ‘why’, he went as far as saying, “Oh you thought this was injustice? Just watch until I raise the Babylonians to cause even more destruction!”
Makes you wonder, if God actually explained, would our human minds even be able to comprehend it? Time and again He has told us we wouldn’t be able to. (Just take a look at Isaiah 55:9, Ecclesiastes 11:5)
Next time you’re about to go into a cycle of an unanswered why, please pause and remember this. Even in times when nothing makes sense, He still loves you. He died for you. He is still in control. He still has amazing plans for you. You don’t need to understand. You just need to trust.
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