Good from evil in plans we can’t see

I was driving to work on Monday morning when I heard breaking news of a hostage situation in Sydney. I was watching all day to see what would happen, praying for a positive outcome. As I awoke on Tuesday morning I looked at the news to find that it was over, but not without loss. Two of the hostages were killed and the gunman himself was dead.

The thing that hit me most was that one of the two hostages killed was a wife and mother of three. This is something that will devastate her family. And I found myself asking, why? Why do things like this happen and why does God allow things like this to happen? I know I can give good answers from the Bible. Answers that are right and helpful, but there is still pain and confusion when things like this happen.

As we are leading up to Christmas I am reading the Christmas story again. What is striking is that there was a similar tragedy but on a much larger scale.

Matthew 2:16 When Herod realised that he had been outwitted by the Magi, he was furious, and he gave orders to kill all the boys in Bethlehem and its vicinity who were two years old and under, in accordance with the time he had learned from the Magi.

What a tragedy! All those children and all the families effected by that. Friends, what we can cling to and know for certain is that in great tragedy God brings about ultimate good. We can’t always see it and might never, but again and again in the Bible we do see God using evil for good.

And the ultimate good that God has brought about is that death is not the end. In the tragedy of Jesus dying on the cross at the hands of evil men, we can, through faith in him, have peace with God and new life – eternal life!

We may not be able to make sense of everything but we do know that God works for our best. God wants us to have a life without tragedy in heaven with him through his son Jesus. In the midst of this tragedy in Sydney, let us hold out the hope we find in Jesus.

Chris Forder


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September 13, 2020