When I was 15, I took a 9.5 hour bus trip to Lily’s wedding, by myself. During that trip, I struck up a conversation with my seatmate. I was a zealous, young Christian, eager to share the glories of God and His working in my life. I shared my story of growing up in an abusive home, of my step-dad’s arrest and subsequent suicide, of God’s blessings in my life through all of that. The question he asked me was “How could I believe in a God who allowed all that to happen to me?” As a young teenager, I didn’t have a ready answer. It took years for me to work through his question and find the answer to his question.
The reality for me is that I would not have survived my childhood without God. I would not have survived my young adult years with His mercies. I’m not sure I would have survived my later adult years without His constant love and support. I’m just not that strong.
I don’t have to be strong because my God is Strength. I don’t have to be rescued or even to rescue myself because my Lifesaver is also my Shield, my Salvation.
We live in a world of evil. Everywhere we turn, everywhere we look we cannot help but see evil at work. Murder, abuse, assault, threat, danger, injury, accidents, they are unavoidable, they are simply there. No one is immune. My suffering, my experiences, I am not alone. Everyone has lost, or will lose, a loved one to death. Everyone will be betrayed or rejected in their lifetime. Statistics show that 25% of women and 16% of men are abused… That’s a lot of people.
God doesn’t cause suffering. He doesn’t even “allow” it. He has bound Himself by our rules, by our choices. It is because of God that we survive, that we can find healing and joy amidst the horrible circumstances we find ourselves in. When God promises “peace beyond understanding”, He means exactly that. There is no other way we can find this peace. His joy, peace and love survives, sustains and carries us through all the evil forces that come against us, that try to destroy us.
I’m still standing today because … God.
There is no other reason.
If I let go of God, I let go of Life. Jesus said “I am the Way, the Truth and the Life.” When we accept life from Him, He makes it abundantly full. He does not ask us to live halfway or half dead. He makes us fully alive.
You can choose Life as well. Don’t allow the evil of this world to destroy your soul when you have a Redeemer just waiting to give you healing, peace and joy in the middle of your suffering. All you have to do is ask Him.