Last time we talked about how God never promised us life in this world would be easy. But in our journey to understand and survive the “Storms of Life” we do wonder, If God loves us so much why do bad things happen ? The root of the question has to do with the fact that there are no perfect people in this life.
Consider for a moment the words of Ecclesiastes 7:20 (NIV) “There is not a righteous man on Earth, who does right and does not sin.” Jesus Christ is the only perfect man to ever walk the Earth. This is a major part of what made him the suitable sacrifice for our sins. Now look at how the same thought is expressed in Romans 3:23 “ For all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.” What happens is all of us depart from God’s perfect plan, to some degree from time to time. When we depart from God’s plan unintended consequences often occur.
Does this means that the bad things that happen to us are our own fault ? No not necessarily. What is important for us to understand is we are imperfect people trying to make our way through an imperfect world. If anything its amazing that the Storms of Life don’t cross our paths more often ! A parent who’s grown child is killed by a drunk driver has suffered a horrible tragedy ! Almost certainly it did not happen by way of anything they did or didn’t do. The child who died likely was just minding their own business. Its unfortunate that the deceased had to cross paths with someone who was not doing as they should. Many of the struggles we face could well be the result of the imperfect action or inaction of the other people we share this world with. However more often than not, bad things happen because one or more people were less than perfect.
But even in the darkest hours of our lives God is wonderful ! He is wonderful because he makes provision for us to be comforted in our struggles. Listen to what 2 Corinthians 1:4 has to say to us on this “ He helps us in all our troubles, so that we are able to help others, who have all kinds of troubles, using the same help we ourselves have received from God.”
As you can see, in the process of guiding us through our own struggles God molds us into a better version of ourselves. This “new version” is not only good enough to get us through what we are facing at the moment, but to allow us to show others down the same path in the future. In many cases the best drug and alcohol counselors are those who have beaten those same addictions themselves. No matter what the subject you gain a powerful level of creditably when you can sit across from someone and look them in the eye and say “I know this works because I did what you need to do, what I am telling you is the way I did it.”
Our think about a single mother. Who better to navigate a single mother through the special challenges of that situation than someone who has made that same journey. One of the big things they are working on in relationship ministry are so called “Mentor couples.” Mentor couples are those who have been married for at least a specified amount of time ( usually at least 2 or 3 years) who serve not just as teachers but literally mentors to couples newer in their relationship. Sometimes this process begins even before the marriage of the younger couple. As anyone who has been married knows, a successful marriage will not be without its struggles. One aspect of this is in marriage you become responsible for other people. Obviously we must actively care for our spouse and their needs, but marriage also often includes children, aging parents etc. Who better to teach a young couple how to manage all the conflicting priorities that come with building a strong Christian marriage than those who have proven that they have ?
So always remember, when the Storms of Life arrive. God will comfort you and guide you through them. Not only that, but if you allow him God will help your struggles blossom into blessings for those around you !
Robert A. Crutchfield is an ordained bi-vocational minister. He is founder of Chief Chaplain of Christ 4 Responders, a Katy based ministry to firefighters, police and EMS. He holds the Certified Chaplain Designation from the International Federation of Christian Chaplains. He serves locally as Chaplain of the Katy Fire & EMS Department. He also serve as Crisis Response Officer and member of the Board of Directors of Chaplain Fellowship Chaplains Corps. You can contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org