Where Is God When We Suffer?

Out of all the big questions that we ask about God, ” Where is God when we suffer?” may be the biggest.

My suffering is not great on a global scale, however the past couple of weeks have been a challenge for me. I’ve been struggling with some whiplash that left me weak and painful. Moreover I was struggling with the side effects of the medication that I was taking to treat whiplash.

I have a tendency toward anxiety and the steroid shots that I received send my panic and anxiety into overdrive.

One day while home alone, I was particularly struggling with both the pain and the panic. I tried deep breathing. I tried relaxing my muscles. I tried praying and praying all to no avail. Finally I decided to turn on Netflix for some distraction.

In a medicated attempt to search for When Harry Met Sally I ended up queuing up  Where is God when I’m Scared?” by the Veggie Tales. I am NOT and have never been a fan of Veggie Tales, but I decided that this choice suited the moment and maybe God was moving through Netflix, so I humbled myself and went with it.

The Scripture passage the vegetables were talking about that day was Daniel in the lion’s den. Two things stand out to me in my tear stained memory of that show.

 

The God who loves you and calls you by name

is bigger than all of your fear.

And this God is With You, even in the lion’s den.

 

Though I am getting better and better each day I find myself still clinging to those two truths.

And if you are going through a hard time or otherwise struggle with fear, I would offer these to you as well (without you even having to humble yourself to animated vegetables).

No matter what fearsome monster is chasing you

Illness
Failed relationships
Job struggles
or just the sheer brokenness of it all

God’s love is bigger by far.

And no matter what your lion’s den looks like or how long you are in it, you are not alone.  The lions may roar and even bite, but God is right beside you preserving you.

Because it turns out God does not pluck us out of our suffering, but sits with us and loves us through it. So that we may endure it till its passing or until we pass into that greater reality where suffering is totally eclipsed by God’s presence and love.

Until then friends, may your hardships be light. But if they are not, always remember you are loved and never alone.

And know that I will be glad to pray for your struggles even as I find my way through my own.

Where is God when we are suffering?

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3 thoughts on “Where Is God When We Suffer?

  1. My eight year old grandson loves the Veggie Tales. And I like them because they teach children a good moral or virtue in each show.

    I too know about living with fear – fear of my cancer returning. I live daily with the effects of my cancer meds. Sometimes I stop taking them just to get away from the side effects for a few days. Then fear of the cancer returns me to the meds.

    I have a plaque over my sink that reads – count your Blessings and be Joyful. I try to live by that standard. When I start feeling low, I start counting and giving gratitude to God for my Blessings – my health, my grandkids, my sons, my wonderful daughter-in-law, my dad, my house, my retirement, the sun and sky, rain, green all around, my cat and oh so much more.

    I pray and hope you will be better soon.

  2. Hi Dena! I met you at She Speaks, that first morning in the lobby and then at the end, when we found out we’d been in the same hotel. I just wanted to visit your blog today.

    Interesting I read this today because I just hurt my back! And yes, God is greater. May He give you grace as your whiplash goes away. Blessings on you and your writing.

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