Our family has gone through a great deal of suffering lately.
- My 90-year-old sister in Egypt died 2 weeks ago after a battle with dementia and ill-health. In the last video, we received she was surrounded by family and friends as they prayed and sang for her. Frail and week she could only move her lips to the words “what a friend we have in Jesus.”
- My 88-year-old sister is in the intensive care unit after complications from heart surgery.
- My 83-year-old sister, after many years of ill-health and suffering, is in a palliative state with only days if not hours to live.
This is only an example or a partial list. Like many, in a time of such suffering, I cannot help but ask “Why?” Why does a good God allow suffering? Why do bad things happen to good people? My sisters lived their life wholeheartedly loving God and serving him. Why do the last days of their lives be full of such pain?
In prayer, I had a conversation with God and asked my honest why. I think He understood my questions and was not mad that I asked. Through my tears I felt as if God was telling me:
It is for you and for your sake, Baha, that I allow this to happen. Because I am a good God I have a good purpose for everything I do or allow.
The first purpose is that I think you need a model. You see, these days you have a lot of knowledge, teachers, and preachers as well as books on how to deal with pain and suffering. Yet, you still complain and grumble about the little problems that come your way. Your generating is short on “Models” to show you how to live and deal with hardships and pain. In a way, your sisters are something like a modern-day Job of the Old Testament. Do you get it?
I said, lord forgive me for being so slow to learn. Forgive me for grumbling about the weather, the little things that cause discomfort and pain. Should you allow me to go through great pain, help me to be the model you want me to be.
The second purpose I want you and others to use the talents I gave you. Do you remember the story of raising Lazarus from the dead? Yes, I could have prevented his death. But Jesus told the disciples that it was for their good that Lazarus died. I could have raised him from the grave without any help. Like then, I want you to be a part of my work in healing the suffering and pain. For sure, your sisters will find perfect healing with no more pain or tears but I want you and others to play your roles and be part of the process with me.
Lord, I am so touched by the love and care expressed to my sisters and our family. Thank you for all those who have become channels of your love and care. Lord, in response to our hurting world, open my eyes to see the roles you want me to play as a steward of the time and talents you have given me.
In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Wise words: God is a perfect parent, He uses all the experiences of life for the purpose of developing His children.