To non-religious spiritual pursuers and my children (See ABOUT THIS SITE tab above or under Menu on phones to navigate site and Follow to receive future Posts)

Some may be comforted by the idea that God controls the day you are going to die to be with Him in heaven. Personally, I do not like the logical or relational baggage that goes with such a thought. You may want to reconsider certain beliefs if it is causing distance between you and God. God is not responsible for all the evil in the world that causes suffering and leads to premature deaths. Death was not God’s original intent but perhaps a Godsend, so we can be reunited with those who are murdered at the hands of others. Just because God does not control every event in our life does not mean God is not in control.

People say “God will take him or her on His timetable.” This implies God keeps some older folks alive longer for whatever reason. One may assume if they are in a great deal of pain, God is keeping them alive to discipline them or that God is not merciful. Families may begin to question God why their parent must suffer and someone’s relative dies without much pain or suffering. Many may be tempted to ask “why” rather than more helpful questions in times of suffering.

If you believe God controls the exact day one dies, this logically raises questions about when people die for reasons other than old age. Did God really appoint a person to be killed by a drunk driver on such and such day? For some that is just too much to bear. Now, don’t get me wrong. God knows a lot and is present everywhere. God knows a driver is drunk and is headed a certain way where someone is walking. He knows physics. He created it. Why doesn’t he stop it?

If God stopped all suffering to His preference as a loving Parent, then that would just make a mockery out of freedom. We would not be satisfied until God stopped all suffering.  God is not a Parent who enjoys seeing His children suffer any more than we do as a parent. There are understandable reasons why God created freedom and why He allows consequences of such a decision to play out. The truth is if God answers all my prayers and I never suffer, I am not necessarily a better person for it. If I could interfere everyday my children experience any suffering, that isn’t necessarily the most loving thing to do.

There are answers to suffering that don’t imply God is controlling, or that God causes suffering, or that God is pulling strings in heaven to teach us a lesson. We can focus on God being with us in the midst of suffering rather than why God isn’t interfering.

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