I watched a movie a while ago about teenagers in a Christian Academy. It received poor reviews, but as a Christian pastor I felt compelled to rent it.
As I expected, the Christians in the movie are depicted as narrow-minded and cruel, while other characters, such as delinquent students and homosexuals, are painted as understanding and warm-hearted.
In one scene, a Christian girl’s car crashes into a tree. The girl thanks God for not getting injured. Her non-Christian friend sneers: “If there is a God, why didn’t He prevent the accident in the first place?”
Non-Christians frequently say things like this when bad things happen to Christians. In fact, Christians themselves sometimes think the same thing. “Why didn’t God prevent my friend’s accident?” “Why did God allow my family members to be sick?” “Why does God make me suffer?”
I know that God is capable of preventing these things from happening to His children, but He doesn’t.
I say this frequently, but our life consists of three parts. Our first life lasts for 9 months in our mother’s womb. We live our second life for about 80 years on earth. We live our third life forever in Heaven.
To God, the third life is most important, because it lasts forever. He uses the second life as a training ground for His children to prepare for the next, more significant life.
The world we now live in is a broken world, ruled by devils. Accidents and misfortune are facts of life. Instead of removing His children from this evil world, God lets His children stay here and uses accidents and misfortune for the good of His children (Romans 8:28). These things help God’s children grow into Christ’s likeness and live godly lives. He will never allow His children to be tried beyond their strength (I Corinthians 10:13).
Returning to the movie, when the non-Christian friend ridiculed God by asking why He didn’t prevent the car accident in the first place, I thought to myself, “If this were real life, the answer is that God undoubtedly did prevent many car accidents up to this time, but allowed this one to occur for a purpose.”
Although I am a pastor, even I can’t help but wonder why God lets bad things happen to our church members when they do occur. But as soon as I have this thought, I say to myself, “God knows and can do everything, and this accident is for a good purpose.” This unmoving confidence in God’s power and wisdom is, I think, called faith.
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