In an earlier post, I made the statement: I’m so thankful to a loving Father who honors us by letting us suffer.
A thoughtful reader responded:
“There is no one that could prevent me from trying to rescue my children. NO ONE. I don’t know what this means – I’m so thankful to a loving Father who honors us by letting us suffer. This statement baffles me.”
My response to her was:
“Thank you for your thoughtful question. I hope you know that I, like you, will do anything in my power to prevent my children from suffering. I’ve also learned a great deal from this talk by Kevin J. Worthen:
[To quote C.S. Lewis,] “The problem of reconciling human suffering with the existence of a God who loves, is only insoluble so long as we attach trivial meaning to the word ‘love.” Too often we confuse God’s love with human kindness. We want, in fact, not so much a Father in Heaven as a grandfather in heaven—a senile benevolence who, as they say, ‘liked to see young people enjoying themselves’ and whose plan for the universe was simply that it might be truly said at the end of the day, ‘a good time was had by all.’”
But that is not God’s plan for us. He wants us to become like Him. He wants us to experience the fullness of joy He enjoys—eternal joy, not merely temporary contentedness. And He loves us enough that He will do whatever it takes for us to reach that goal, including allowing us to experience things that are difficult and soul-stretching. And He does it not because He doesn’t love us, but precisely because He does.
But even when we have to learn things from our extremities in order to fulfill God’s plan for us, His love will be there to sustain us… especially when we need His love the most. …So let us not sell God’s love short by confusing it with mere human kindness. His love is much deeper than that. (Kevin J. Worthen, “It Was as If a Blanket of Love Was Flowing Over Me”, May 2, 2013, BYU Women’s Conference)
What are your thoughts?