We all have to ask ourselves some tough questions sooner or later that don’t always have a simple answer. Things like why bad stuff happens to good people, why people have to suffer, and why we always lose one sock?
I don’t know the answer to that last one, but maybe I can help you figure out why God allows suffering. First of all, these questions aren’t new. They’ve been around since Jesus and his followers. In the Gospels, there’s a story that explains why God allows suffering – it’s in John 9.
“As Jesus was walking along, he saw a man who had been blind from birth. ‘Rabbi,’ his disciples asked him, “why was this man born blind? Was it because of his own sins or his parent’s sins?’ ‘It was not because of his sins or his parents’ sins,’ Jesus answered. ‘This happened so the power of God could be seen in him. We must quickly carry out the tasks assigned us by the one who sent us. The night is coming, and then no one can work. But while I am here in the world, I am the light of the world.’ Then He spit on the ground, made mud with the saliva, and spread the mud over the blind man’s eyes. He told him, ‘Go wash yourself in the pool of Siloam’ (Siloam means “sent”). So the man went and washed and came back seeing!” (John 9:1-7, NLT).
We’ve all heard it said, “seeing is believing.” But in this man’s life, who had been blind all his life, it’s more accurate to say “seeing is seeing.” When Jesus healed him, He was able to see on many levels. He could see the beauty of the world around him, see the meaning of life, see everything in its right place, see what really matters. And the best part? He could see Jesus.