Why

8 Jul

I know this question is asked a thousand different times each day and in a thousand different ways. It is asked by small children who wonder at life and seek understanding, it is asked by frustrated people who find their wishes and goals slip from their grasp, and it is asked by those who grieve.

Yesterday I was told of the unexpected death of a dear man from my small church. He was only in his late thirties; Adam leaves a wife and many people who loved him. The question of “Why” looms in many peoples minds. We want to understand why this tragic death would occur to someone so full of life and caring. We want to have meaning in a world that has turned upside down.

It is a question that has been struggled with through the centuries from the book of Job to “When Bad Things Happen to Good People.” People have given their reflection on the reason for pain and suffering in the world, and the power of God within that pain.

Although the question “Why” bubbles to our minds and hearts in times of deep grieving, I don’t think it is a useful question. Even if the exact reasons for a death can be answered, the pain remains. I have never believed that God is the one who causes the time of death or that “when your times comes, there is nothing you can do.” I am not a fatalist.

I believe God is with us. I believe God grieves with us, as Jesus wept with his friends. I believe that God is the author of life, and eternal life. I believe God shares the strength of the Divine healing spirit with us through prayers and friends and time.

In my small church we are like a small family. If someone is not there on Sunday we usually know if they are on vacation, or visiting other family somewhere. In my small church everyone has their place to sit and when their space in empty there is usually a reason. I can find no reason why Adam should not be sitting in his spot, I can find no answer to the question, Why. I can only stand with others who are grieving the tremendous loss and seek God’s healing presence.

Peace

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