There is someone on Twitter who I have grown to greatly appreciate (Evan Welcher). I feel like he and I have quite a bit in common thought-process wise, even if he is on the other side of the pond.
He is suffering through something right now that is outside my experience. His "Resplendent Bride" is fighting a cancer that once appeared defeated (only to return). Her and his faith are inspirational, and he made a comment in a recent post on Caring Bridge that seemed to put many skeptic's thoughts into words:
One might wonder, "Why keep thanking God when He does not seem to be overly concerned with answering your cries?"1
How would you answer that? Hoping that my plane to Oakland will arrive soon an that I'll board it soon after, I won't attempt a full answer here. Suffice it to say that over my 49 years I've learned that folks who have control of parts of my life (e.g. my parents years ago and my boss right now) often know a lot more than I do, and I am wise not to judge them based on my limited view of circumstances. If I can realize that for them, how much more can I for One who is infinitely smarter and more trustworthy.
And, regardless of what happens to me, I know…
(See 1 Peter 5:7 and John 16:27.)
Here is Evan's answer:
We thank God for two specific reasons among infinite reasons: 1. He has given us all the momentous good we have tasted and relished up to now. 2. At the end of the Age The Lord Jesus Christ will tenderly heal all His children’s broken bodies. This is called resurrection.2
Finally, I couldn't help but think Evan's query was implicitly answered in "Questions for Reflection or Group Study" after one section of Lee Strobel's The Case for Faith: A Journalist Investigates the Toughest Objections to Christianity:
If you were God, how would you have designed the world differently? As you remove suffering or evil and tinker with people's free will, think through the consequences that would result. How would people form character in your utopia? Would they be motivated to seek God in the midst of their pleasures? If you supernaturally intervened to eliminate evil, where would you draw the line—to prevent murder? Child abuse? Theft? Slander? Evil thoughts that may prompt evil actions? At what point are people turned into puppets who lack free will and therefore cannot truly express love?2
Especially if we have recently suffered at the hands of evil it can be difficult to get beyond our myopic views, and in some ways I cannot blame those who have undergone the most terrible possibilities that sin has wrought.
All I can tell you is God deserves our trust…
And Evan and Danielle deserve our prayers as they rightly trust our Lord.
1 "An Update On My Resplendent Bride" (written August 23, 2013 at 7:40PM).
3 Strobel, Lee (2009-05-18). The Case for Faith: A Journalist Investigates the Toughest Objections to Christianity (Kindle Locations 910-913). Zondervan. Kindle Edition.