At the time of me writing this, 50 lives have been lost, 53 lives have been physically injured and too many lives will bare emotional scars over losing a son, a daughter, a friend or a lover at that gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida early Sunday morning at the hands of a killer. What a horrible tragedy! How could this have been prevented? Who or what is to blame? Was this another act of Jihad carried out by a Muslim extremist or a hate crime against the LGBT community? Do we need to have tougher gun laws or do we need to build more prisons and have tougher penalties for people who use guns in a crime? How can a loving, all-powerful God allow evil to exist? Why doesn’t He intervene to prevent these bad things from happening?
These are the questions people around the country are asking themselves today. The first two questions will be figured out during the ongoing investigation conducted by the FBI and the local police. The following two questions are political footballs which will be punted all over the field leading up to the upcoming Presidential election. The final two questions though are questions Christians and non-Christians alike have grappled with since the beginning.
For centuries, non-believers have used the great tragedies of their time to pose these questions to believers as some sort of proof of their stance that because evil exists, God is either weak, doesn’t care or doesn’t exist. For centuries Christians have defended their faith by pointing out the story of Job. God allowed Job to be tortured by Satan. Job’s family, his wealth and even his health was destroyed. While Job suffered much at the hand of Satan, he never cursed God. Instead he said, “Shall we accept good from God, and not trouble? The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; may the name of the Lord be praised.”
How do we respond during the darkest times in our lives? How do we respond when circumstances just don’t go our way? Following Job’s advise is not easy especially when tragic events unfold like the horror at the nightclub. What was Job’s secret? God Himself said about Job that, “he is blameless and upright, a man who fears God and shuns evil.” To fear God is to know Him. Job had a relationship with God which drove him to acting in a way which pleased God. It is only by building a relationship with God (or with anyone) which allows trust to form and without trust, Job would have buckled under the weight of suffering he was enduring.
So how do we build that relationship with God? It’s like with any relationship: We must spend time with the person we want to get to know better. And what would a relationship be without talking to one another? God communicates through His love letters to us….the Bible. We talk to Him with our prayers.
So get to know the Creator of the universe. He wants you to get to know Him. And pray for the many hurting souls in Orlando. God loves them all.
P.S. My wife, Karen wrote a fantastic little story about trusting God in her book Trust Me My Child. You can learn more about this book under the Our Books tab.