‘Where is God when it Hurts ?’ Is the title of a book by Philip Yancey which I read many years ago, which helped me make some kind of sense of pain and sorrow.
When terrible things have happened to a friend or relative, I am often asked ‘where is a loving God in all of this’. The short answer, is that He is there right in the middle of it holding us and supporting us if we let him
I have very recently lost a close friend in a car accident. - On holiday on the other side of the world, hit by a drunk driver; and her husband (another close friend ) is still on life support. I can’t make sense of any of it, and have told God so! Yet I believe He is there with my friend in hospital and with their respective families, and that He knows, understands and feels what they are going through.
In the Psalms we often read of the Psalmist crying out to God in anguish, asking Him to help them, to rescue them from their enemies or from mental or physical pain. In Psalm 56 we see that God knows the psalmist’s suffering “You keep track of all my sorrows. You have collected all my tears in your bottle. You have recorded each one in your book (vs8).”
Even if we can’t make sense of what we are going through, this verse reassures us that God understands and feels our suffering; that he knows we want his help and healing. But above all He cares and loves us; that what is happening to us matters to Him. And most importantly, He is still with us, even if sometimes we don’t recognise that He is there.