“If God is Good, Why Do Bad Things Happen?” This is my write-up of a specific portion of the 2011 Father’s Day (June 19) message given by Senior Pastor David W. Wing at the Dover Foursquare Church. I feel this truly is a very timely and anointed answer to this age-old question asked by so many, even by those who are born again and Spirit-filled.
To know more about the nature and the size of God’s Fatherhood, all we need to do is to begin digging into Psalm 91.
Psalm 91:1-2 NLT (New Living Translation) says:
1 Those who live in the shelter of the Most High will find rest in the shadow of the Almighty.
2 This I declare about the Lord: He alone is my refuge, my place of safety;He is my God, and I trust Him.
He loves us so very much and He is our example of Fatherhood. God offers us more than the possibility of protection. Will God take care of us? Will God guard us and watch over us? Absolutely! Yes, He will! As you walk, He leads. As you sleep, He patrols.
Psalm 91:3-4 NLT (New Living Translation) declares:
3 For he will rescue you from every trap and protect you from deadly disease.
4 He will cover you with his feathers. He will shelter you with his wings. His faithful promises are your armor and protection.
He protects us from the “winds” of life. His wings at this very moment are protecting us. He protects us from traps that come our way.
Psalm 91:10 NCV (New Century Version) makes this very bold promise:
10 Nothing bad will happen to you; no disaster will come to your home.
Right away someone might be thinking: “Oh, is that right? If nothing bad happens to me, explain my job loss to me. If nothing bad happens to me, explain my child’s illness. Explain the pain that I am feeling right now if nothing bad happens. If God is my Father, then why do bad things happen?”
Well, more than likely, we each have different defintions of the word “bad” than what God Himself has. Parents and children often have different definitions. If you were to look up the word “bad” in a Junior Higher’s “dictionary”, it could very likely be listed as a “a pimple on my nose” or a “my test in geomety”. “Dad, this is really bad!” You see, what is bad to a child is not always bad to the dad! God views our life with confidence because He has not only read the story of our life, He has written it! His purpose is very clear. He is our Father and He loves us. He is taking care of us. We see this ever so clearly in Psalm 91. Many times, God uses the struggles of life to toughen our spiritual skin.
A number of years ago our family visited Colonial Williamsburg which is a recreation of the 18th century America located in Williamsburg, VA. We watched a silversmith place a bar of silver on an anvil and begin to pound it with a sledge hammer. Once that metal was flat enough for shaping, it went right into the furnace. The worker heats and pounds this metal until it takes the shape of the tool that he wants it to be for his use. So there is this heating and pounding, and more heating and more pounding. We all can see where this is going, right?
Interestingly, the word “smith” in silversmith comes from an old English word meaning “to smite”. Silversmiths are accomplished smiters! So once that worker is satisfied with the form of his tool, then he begins to pumice it. He begins using smaller hammers, and abrasive pads. He taps and he rubs and he decorates, and no one stops him! No one yanks the hammer out of his hand and says, “Go easy on that silver! You’ve pounded on it enough!” The craftsman buffets the metal until he is finished with it! We don’t really like the work “buffet”, do we? But you know what happens? Silversmiths may keep polishing until they can see their face in the tool! Our Heavenly Father wants His face seen in us! There is wonderful promise that speaks to us about our faithful Father’s dealings in our lives. The Psalmist makes this declaration in Psalm 138:8: “The Lord will perfect that which concerns me…”
We have a wonderful Father and He guards those that turn to Him. Listen! The pounding and the heat of the furnace that we feel at times in our lives in no way suggests that He is far from us. Rather, these dealings clearly prove that He is very near — sitting right next to us! “He will sit like a refiner of silver…” (Malachi 3:3). Because everything that is going on in our lives is going on so that we can become a mirror of His image! We need to trust Him! We need to realize and declare:
“I know that He is my Father and I can depend on Him and He is directing my steps. What I am dealing with right now lets me know that He is close to me, sitting right next to me. He is NOT far from me. He loves me and He will surely finish the “good work” (Philippians 1:6) He began in me”
[ You can listen to Pastor Dave’s entire 2011 Father’s Day message entitled “Iron Men” on the church’s website: http://doverfoursquare.org/5/sermons.html ]