Tragedy strikes everyday. I learned today that Steven Curtis Chapman’s daughter was killed in an accident. My prayers for comfort are being heard by the God that not only hears our prayers, but has the power to answer them.
When tragedy strikes, our first question is normally, “Why?” I don’t think it is an unreasonable question, after all, Jesus asked His Father, “Why” (Matthew 27:46) This side of heaven we may never know the answer to the whys of life. In heaven, I don’t think it will matter . . . for Christians, we’ll worship our Savior face to face no longer walking by faith, but walking by sight. But we’re not there yet and we must walk a walk of faith. It’s a difficult walk, but God has not left us to walk alone. His Holy Spirit dwells within us comforting us in sorrow and strengthening us in weakness.
Tragedy struck my life on May 5, 2008 that left me asking, “Why?” Two dear friends were killed in their home. These were not your ordinary, everyday friends. These were real friends. These were the kind of friends that called just to talk. There was no let’s get to the point of why you called, we just chatted. We talked about the Lord, about our children, our jobs, our goals. We talked.
The answer to the why question is difficult yet the answer is right in front of us. We live in a world where sin still reigns. As long as we live in this world, we will struggle with, and against sin. In Romans 7, Paul spoke of his struggle with doing as the Lord leads and the struggle to overcome the power of his flesh. It was a battle, a struggle. Paul provides good news in Romans 8:2, “For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death.” We have been set free by Jesus Christ.
Even when we know the answer to all of our why questions, it doesn’t change the outcome. The bottom line is that our trials serve to refine us. Just as a jeweler refines gold to make jewelry, our Lord refines us through the trials of life to make us pure. The Apostle Peter says it this way, “In this you greatly rejoice, even though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been distressed by various trials, so that the proof of your faith, being more precious than gold which is perishable, even though tested by fire, may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ.” (1 Peter 1: 6-7)
I thank the Lord for the time I had with T.J. and Cindy. I knew them for 14 years . . . in my mind it was too short. Nothing ever takes God by surprise. Being an authentic Christian means trusting that God is the One that knows tomorrow as well as He knows yesterday. The walk of faith is hard, but it is a walk we must take, but don’t be weary, God, His Son, and His Holy Spirit are walking right there with you.