By the time you read this, hopefully, Hurricane Harvey will be long gone, but we all know that the after effects of such a tragedy take a lot longer to handle. The physical reconstruction work is daunting enough but rebuilding lives, families, hearts, and minds is another matter completely. Why did God allow such devastation?
Many people claim to have answers, here are a few to think about.
1. We are being punished for sin.
God brought plagues against Egypt in response to Pharaoh’s “hardened heart.” The book of Revelation is full of disasters arranged by God to discipline those who reject him. Is Hurricane Harvey an instrument of his anger against our sinfulness?
If so, does this mean that people living on the Gulf Coast are worse sinners than those residing in the Wirral, London or New York City? God can use disasters to bring us to repentance, but is this always the explanation for such calamity?
2. Fairness demands that God ignores the crisis.
If God stopped Hurricane Harvey, wouldn’t he have to do the same with every storm? Does this mean that he cannot cure anyone of cancer unless he cures everyone of cancer? He cannot protect one person unless he protects us all! Such logic is flawed. I, personally, know of examples where God has healed in response to prayer, and he has protected people in the past – i.e., in the UK we had a National Day of Prayer on the 26th of May 1940 before successful Dunkirk evacuation in 1940 against all the odds.
3. He does not know or doesn’t care, or can’t help.
Skeptics might claim that if God knew the devastation that this hurricane would bring, or cared for those in its path, or had the power to prevent their suffering, surely he would have intervened. So because he has not, he cannot? However, His word teaches that he is “the same yesterday and today and forever” (Hebrews 13:8). Moreover, his omniscience, compassion, and omnipotence are on display regularly in our broken world.
So what is my conclusion – I do not have an answer, but I know that God sometimes intervenes in natural disasters and sometimes he does not. I do know that sometimes he heals and sometimes he does not. The scripture states in Isaiah 55:8 ”my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD.”
I also know that God saves all who call upon his name, Romans 10:13 and that he loves us unconditionally despite the fact that we are all sinners, Romans 5:8. The Bible teaches that one day this broken world will be gone and that Believers will live in “a new heaven and a new earth,” Revelation 21:1.
I choose to trust God, to trust him even when I do not presently have explanations. Will you join me?
Courtesy of http://www.findingthemissingpeace.co.uk/