About three in the afternoon Jesus cried out in a loud voice, “Eli, Eli,lemasabachthani?” (which means “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”).
~ Matthew 27:46
We all grieved and mourned the brutal, unimaginable horror that took place November 5, 2017, at First Baptist Church of Sutherland Springs. A deranged gunman shot and killed 26 people and wounded 20 others in the worst church shooting America has ever witnessed. The loss of life and utter devastation to individual families and the church family at large are simply heartbreaking to contemplate.
In times like this, we naturally ask, “Why, God? These people were worshiping You, and they were senselessly and viciously gunned down in cold blood. I cannot understand why, You would have allowed this to happen.”
You know, it is normal and natural to ask God why. Jesus asked why when He was on the cross, dying for the sins of the world. We just need to know that God does not often answer our question of why. He is not in the business of explaining. He is in the business of sustaining. We will probably never know the answer to our whys this side of heaven. But what we can know and cling to are these truths:
God is good. God is love. God is perfect. God is in control. God never makes a mistake. God cares for us. God allows things to happen in life that don’t make sense to us… but they do make sense to Him. When we ask God our why questions, His response is usually, “My child, you would not understand even if I explained it to you. So, just trust Me.”
In the midst of a tragedy, may we trust God and pray that He would use it somehow and some way to further His Kingdom. May He use it as an opportunity for people like you and me to have spiritual conversations with those who do not know Christ. May we remember that this fallen world is not our home. We are citizens of heaven who are to hold all things loosely while on this earth. Nothing really belongs to us, not even our own children. Everything belongs to God — “Behold, all souls are Mine” (Ezekiel 18:4). We are simply the managers of His stuff. May we manage well, trusting Him to do “all things well” and “work all things together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.”