Where is God?

“During World War II, following word that an only son had been killed in action, a priest was called to the home of grief-stricken parents. The father, pacing the floor, weeping, in anger demanded, “Where was God when my son was being killed?” Silence prevailed. Then the ministering priest replied, “I guess where He was when His Son was being killed.” The calm, profound answer impacted the father, for it brought God out of remoteness into the circle of real life.”

− Author Unknown

I used this quote in a previous post, The Heaviness of Life, and wanted to make a similar post with regard to the tragedy that is unfolding in the aftermath of Harvey.

Critics of God will be quick to wonder, “How can a loving God cause so much pain and devastation?” Perhaps even those who believe in God may wonder the same thing, so it’s worth presenting an apologia of some sort to respond to those who have such questions.

We must first remember that God is not the author of evil, man is. We have been living in a fallen state and an earth cursed ever since our first parents exercised their freewill and chose to defy God (Genesis 3:17-19). This freewill is the same freewill that allows us to either accept Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior or reject Him and everything about His nature.

Without this freewill that God has provided, there could be no love. There could be no choices, but rather a simple, blind allegiance to an all-powerful Creator. And just the opposite is true. Freewill allows us to spew hatred and violence and rebellion against God.

Calamities such as Harvey have happened before and they will happen again. Could God in His sovereignty create a world where nothing like this would ever happen? Yes, He already did once, but man ruined that. But the Bible I read promises that He will make this world perfect once more someday (Isaiah 65:17; Hebrews 12:26-27; 2 Peter 3:12-13; Revelation 21:1). And if you believe this, then you will share in such a world—a world where He will live among us (Revelation 21:3).

For now, there will be suffering and death and tragedies and, as heartbreaking as all of this is, if we look close enough we can also see remnants of good and of hope, images of God in people helping strangers and neighbors where political ideologies and race take a backseat to striving in common decency, where loving one’s neighbor is the most important concern. In the same sovereignty, God uses these events to remind us all of how precious life is and that nothing is guaranteed.

This is happening now. In the midst of this tragedy, God is working to restore humanity by refocusing the hatred that the media perpetuates into caring for the well-being of one another. There are no Black Lives Matter protesters, no White Supremacy marches, no Liberals, no Conservatives, just people. People created in the image of God helping one another.

Yes, see God in this tragedy affecting Texas and parts of Louisiana. But see Him at work in those who reflect His character in their tireless efforts to save one another.