WHEN BAD THINGS HAPPEN TO GOOD PEOPLE
WHAT’S YOUR HANDICAP?
As we gather each Sunday and Wednesday, we meet with one another and try to “catch up with one another.” Many of us bear burdens of which no one else is aware. Some of us have lived with these struggles and burdens all our lives and we “soldier” on without anyone having a clue of what is going on. We smile, we laugh, but hearts are breaking and these hope to find some “hope” as they live each day. My prayer is that as you read the following articles you will be encouraged . . . .
“We need to be reminded that “Adversity will come to the life of every person.”
In Isaiah 30:20-21 Isaiah wrote, “And though the Lord give you the bread of adversity and the water of affliction, yet your Teacher will not hide himself anymore, but your eyes shall see your Teacher. And your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, “This is the way, walk in it,” when you turn to the right or when you turn to the left.”
Often physical or mental handicaps will limit or hinder us from doing something others do easily.
How shall we react?
1. We can pray to the Lord to remove the difficulty. Often physical problems can be corrected by surgery or medication.
2. We may be able, by extra work, to compensate for and overcome the handicaps. Dyslexia is a reading disorder that has been frustrating to many. However, some have been able to overcome this problem.
Woodrow Wilson did not learn the alphabet until he was nine, didn’t read until he was eleven, and was considered by relatives to be dull and backward. At Princeton University, his grades were only fair. But his brilliant oratorical style began to blossom at the same time, paving the way for his two distinguished presidencies—of Princeton and of the United States.
General George S. Patton had even more problems. At twelve he could not read. It took him five years to get through West Point, and he made it only by memorizing his textbooks word for word.
3. We can accept the fact that no everyone can do everything. Different people have different abilities. There are some things I cannot do.
“For the body does not consist of one member but of many. . . . If the whole body were an eye, where would be the sense of hearing? If the whole body were an ear, where would be the sense of smell? But as it is, God arranged the members in the body, each one of them, as he chose. If all were a single member, where would the body be? As it is, there are many parts, yet one body.” (1 Corinthians 12:14, 17-19)
4. We can learn to live with limitations that we have and find strength in our disabilities. Paul wrote of his thorn in the flesh. He asked God to remove it. The Lord chose not to do that. Then Paul said, “But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that
the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong. (2 Corinthians 12:9-10)
Adversity and afflictions can be my teachers.
I don’t want to miss the class.
Jerrie Barber, February 8 1988 Central Church of Christ Dalton GA
WHY LORD, WHY?
Puzzlement is written on 1000 faces. Honest hearts grope for answers. Preacher fumble for words — all know God is good, God is gracious, God is love. Yet – I experience some things! Hurts come. Why does God allow it? Why cancer? Why war? Why sin’s ascendancy? Why evil’s prosperity? Is God powerless to stop it or does he not care? Surely, he does not approve. Give me a one-two-three point answer. But one can’t.
If God is so logical and faith is so proper explain life’s perplexities to me. God’s way is in the sanctuary (Psalm 77:13), isn’t it? Can’t one today know exactly how he is to be worshipped, what he must do to be saved, what is the work of the church, and the moral manner by which we are to live? Yes, a thousand times yes! “Alright, if you wish great exactness and finality can answer all this about the wish of your God tell me why the good suffer, the righteous cause grows slowly, and evil knows prosperity – if you can explain so much tell me the answer to this!” The friend of God feels heavy the need to answer.
We give you one! “Your way is in the sea and your path in the great waters and your footsteps are not known!” (Psalm 77:19) Whoever saw a trail in the sea? Mark his footsteps in the sanctuary —
God! He’s right and in the end we’ll see him lead his “people like a flock.”
I can grasp the sanctuary; I can’t see the sea! I see through the glass darkly but then face to face.
Though he slay me yet I will trust him – I’ll love him when I walk the charted path of the sanctuary and I’ll love him when he walks the sea and his footsteps are not known!
To some questions I’ll give an answer; to some I’ll say I don’t know — but he does!
Jim Bill McInteer June 29 1992 Go Teach Christ Forrest Park Church of Christ