These first four deaths (My Uncle, My Pastor's Son, My Missionary Cousin, and My Little Cousin) occurred before I was 20 years old and impacted my life profoundly. They taught me lessons about the shortness of life, the suddenness of death, and about keeping short accounts and telling people I love and value them.
These first four deaths also raised questions about the character of God. I have consistently had a firm belief in the existence of God. I see too much evidence in the natural world around me, in the intricacy of the human body and the laws of nature to doubt that He exists. I have, however, had many questions about the character of God.
My Uncle was a youth group leader and driving students to a youth group event when he sustained the injuries that would lead to his death. My Pastor’s Son was a good boy and his father was a Pastor – a man of God. My Missionary Cousin was going to tell people in Peru about how Jesus died to save them, but he was never able to go. My Little Cousin was the daughter and granddaughter of people who loved God and served Him faithfully. It seemed so unfair to me that God would allow these people to die. After all they were serving Him, didn’t that mean they should experience blessing and long life? It seemed so very unfair to me. I asked why. No, at times my heart screamed why.
Although I probably wouldn’t have had the courage to admit it to many or even to myself, I spent many years doubting that God was good. I questioned what kind of God would do this, what kind of God would kill people who were serving Him. What kind of God would allow people to suffer so?
I didn’t know that I was asking the age old question “Why do bad things happen to good people?” But, I was. And it was 16 years before I would find peace with this question.
What insights into the question
"Why do bad things happen to good people?"
have you gleaned on your journey?