Hello once again, dearest readers, I told you recently that I've been pondering some deep thoughts these days, and one of them has to do with the difficult topic of why bad things happen to good people...or why God lets bad stuff happen. I realize that this more a question that unsaved people ask when they are trying to reconcile the facts that God loves them and that bad things happen.
But I want to offer my explanation to you, my readers, in hopes that it gives another perspective, and if you're ever in such a conversation, this might help to have in the back of your mind.
When I picture life and circumstances, I think of a conveyor belt. God is in charge, and He has the things that He's putting on the conveyor belt, and they're all in the right order and He is in control.
Then I think of satan and how he will try to mess up God's plans and put something on my life's conveyor belt that doesn't line up with God's will, and then God kinda scrambles and puts something else on my conveyor belt and life isn't as good as it was before.
Then I heard something, and I really, really wrestled with this one. I believe it was Malcolm Smith who said that God only allows in our lives what we can handle. And I thought, how horrible! I had just begun to get convinced that God loves me, really and truly, and then I find out that He allowed the painful things in my life! Way to rain on my parade!
Then I thought about my conveyor belt picture. satan isn't sneaking around putting stuff on my belt when God's not looking. It's not like God doesn't see what the enemy is doing! No, my mental picture had to change. So my picture adjusted to make room for God's sovereignty, and this is how it now looks. God has His plans for my life, and He knows what I can handle.
The enemy attempts to put horrible stuff on my conveyor belt, but God takes off what doesn't align with His will. He knows my plimsoll line, and He lets stuff happen, either because of my choices that I've made, or that seem awful to me but are really the kinder act.
You see, what my mental picture was missing was the fact that God is absolutely sovereign. Even when bad things happen to the world, like a disease breaking out, or an economy suffering, God is in control. He works everything to the good, because that is Who He is. He doesn't want these bad things to happen, but He allows them so He can work the greatest good.
I think that Papa, in William P. Young's book "The Shack," says it the best. "...your choices are not stronger than My purposes, and I will use every choice you make for the ultimate good and most loving outcome." You see? We don't even know what the other options are! We don't know what we've been saved from! God is the only One Who does, and thank goodness He chooses the best option! God is so sovereign!