The question “Why?” has loomed large in my mind for years now. At every turn in our path, it pops up and I demand answers from God. Why has He not allowed us to have children? Why has He frustrated our adoption process? Why has He provided so many baby items but no child? Why does He give others so many children but not give us just one? Why does He let this painful struggle continue when He could so easily fix it?
If only God would give me answers maybe the pain would be bearable. But my thoughts always come back to the truth that I may never have children and I may never know why. And I don’t like that. I need to understand. I need to know the reason. I need God to explain Himself to me, to justify why I must endure these difficulties.
But I don’t always get answers. And God is not obligated to give them.
Yes, God is my Father who I can take my troubles and cares to, but He is also my King and Lord. It is not ok for me to throw temper tantrums and make demands of Him like a spoiled child. Like Job who made demands of Him, I must realize my place before the God of the universe.
In the book of Job, God allows Satan to bring suffering into Job’s life. Job and his friends try to explain why this suffering happened, and the friends suggest it is due to a sin of Job’s. Job proclaims his innocence, asserting that God has treated him wrongly, and calls on God to explain Himself. God does respond – though He doesn’t give Job the answers he requested. Instead, God reminds Job of who he is making demands.
Then the Lord answered Job out of the whirlwind and said…
“I will question you, and you make it known to me.
Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth?
Tell me, if you have understanding.
Who determined its measurements – surely you know!”
Job 38:1, 3-5
God displays over several chapters that no one is as powerful and wise as He, and He is not beholden to His creation to explain Himself.
I still don’t have the answers I want. But instead of relying on my own understanding of my situation, I can rely on the all-knowing and all-powerful Creator.
Even when we don’t have all the answers, we can remember what is true: God is not blind to our sufferings, and He is not apathetic toward our pain. We must repent of our arrogance in thinking we know better than Him and humble ourselves, acknowledging our own limitations before the wise and holy God like Job:
“I know that you can do all things,
and that no purpose of yours can be thwarted…
Therefore I have uttered what I did not understand,
things too wonderful for me, which I did not know.”