All around us is a broken world - a world broken because of sin. Physical and emotional pain, abuse, sickness, death, loneliness, poverty, oppression....the list of pain can go on and on. We wonder if God is in control and WHY there is so much pain in our world.
When we read Psalms, we can see the bold questions that the Psalmist asked.....
"Why, O Lord, do you stand off? Why do you hide yourself in times of trouble? (Ps. 10:1).
"My God, my God, why have you forsaken me? Why are you so far from helping me, from the words of my groaning?" (Ps. 22:1)
Reading the Psalms also reminds us that God can handle our questions. He listens and can understand our doubt and anger. God hates poverty, suffering, oppression, etc....more than we do. That's why he sent his son. He loves the poor, the dirty, the broken. He is here, the only one who can fulfill their needs.
Teens can often feel overwhelmed by their own or others' pain. Like us, they can feel that God doesn't care or wonder why God allows such pain. Encourage them to talk to God, to ask the questions and to seek answers. Asking "why, God?" isn't a sign of weak faith, God is big enough to handle our questions. When our hurt and confusion lead us to run into the arms of God, we find peace. Even as we ask "why", we can remember that God sent his son to die for us and that God is redeeming the world, making all things new.
"Lord, I know you feel our sadness. Give us strength to follow you through dark times. Help us to hold on to your promises and to live each day with joy, gratitude, and love. Help us to live in ways that point others to you so that, one day, we can all be together. Amen.