Barnabas Network International | Online Resources for Churches


Asking God Just One Question  


If you had the opportunity to ask God just one question, what would it be?   "God, why do you allow so much suffering in the world?"  "God, why did you let my child die?" "God, why do bad things happen to good people and good things happen to bad people?"  "God, why did you let my son become a drug addict?"  "God, why did my husband leave me?"  "Why did you allow me to get this disease?  Why? Why? Why? 


Interestingly, most of these questions would come from our hearts, not from our heads. They would be questions produced by confusing and painful experience rather than the mysteries of abstract philosophy or theology.   For some of those questions we could not receive an answer even if one was given because the pain and confusion that prompted the question in the first place would be so intense that no explanation would satisfy the aching heart.  


Sometimes when I ask my computer to find something, it tells me that it can't find what I requested. At times it feels like God is no more help than my computer. I ask the question but heaven seems to be silent. God is either not there or is not interested. Recently I bought a book authored by Ken Gire entitled, "The North Face Of God" with the subtitle, "Hope for the times when God seems indifferent". Ken understands the reality of the 'silence of God'.  


One of life's toughest decisions is to determine to trust God when He seems to be so untrustworthy. I mean, it's easy to talk about trusting in God and believing in God when all goes well. Who needs faith in such pleasant surroundings?   However, its quite another thing to squarely face adversity, pain, reversals and death and to say to God, "I don't begin to understand why these things are happening to me, my family, my community, my nation, our world. But I want you to know that I trust you".


In the Bible there is the story of a man called Job. Neither you or I have ever experienced anything like the disasters and adversity he experienced. He wrestled with the big "why?" questions. Yet, as I read his story, I'm not convinced that he ever received a satisfactory answer.   He finally found relief in his pain and confusion and expressed it like this: "He (God) knows the way that I take and, when He has tested me, I will come forth as gold". He asked the question but trusted when he received no answer.  


What one question would you ask God?    

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