Conversations | Edition Eighteen

Continuing our weekly conversations...
The deal: Each Thursday, we announce a question of the week. We seek to ask questions that spark interesting conversations, whether it simply be about books, traditions, spiritual disciplines, more theological matters, or anything related to life in general. You can join in our conversations two ways:

1. Leave a comment with your thoughts!
2. Or, if you prefer, post an answer on your own blog and leave us a link to your post so we can comment and add to the conversation. If you post on your own blog, you are welcome to use the picture above as long as you link back to us somewhere in your post.

This week's question...
In his book Trusting God, Jerry Bridges shares this (anonymous) quote: "A lesser wisdom than the Divine would feel impelled to forbid, to circumvent or to resist the outworking of these hellish plans. It is a fact that often God's people try to do this themselves, or cry inceasingly to he Lord that He may do it. So it is that prayers often seem to lie unanswered. For we are being handled by a wisdom which is perfect, a wisdom which can achieve what it [intends] by taking hold of things and people which are meant for evil and making them work together for good."

I know it's hard for me to understand (and harder still to remember) that God is big enough and wise enough to use the bad things for His purposes, rather than needing to avoid them. It seems that Joanna's post on Monday struck quite a chord with you, so let's talk about suffering and about this quote.

What do you think? Have there been times in your life when you can see how things were used for good, or times when it just seems senseless and wrong?


  1. About a year and a half ago someone in my church committed suicide. Sometimes it's still hard to understand why God allowed it to happen, but someday we'll know the reason.

  2. Sarah… I am really speechless and do not know what to say. :'(

  3. Oh Sarah, that's heartbreaking. Sometimes things do just seem senseless and wrong. I know it's seemed like that a lot in my life, from the death of my sister to the loss of my home. But, I see things differently in light of eternity. Every time I turn around, unfathomable good comes, even if I don't see it, even if it's years later, even if I won't realize it 'till heaven. In having gone through such great suffering myself, I am able to truly reach out to those that are hurting.
    I'm able to look at life as an adventure. Knowing that just like every good storybook, with all its tragic rainy times and all its sunny mountaintops, it's all working together for the happily ever after.

  4. When I was a preteen my younger brother was diagnosed with a brain tumor and it was hard to trust God. Yet, by trusing Him, so much good has grown out of the situation. Little miracles such as no side effects from the radiation. The blessing of so many people supporting our family. It came in a formative stage of my life and God used the experience to grow me closer to Him, and help me mature in a big way. The growth and good far outweighs the bad and my family would not be same without the experience.
    With each new situation that arises it can still be a struggle to trust God, but knowing of His faithfulness and power to work all things together for good, reminds me to trust.


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