Making Sense of Suffering

Whether implicitly or explicitly, we all seek security and consolation. Yet even when we find some level of security, some degree of consolation, it isn’t enough. For many, security and consolation are beyond their reach. Far beyond. Jesus claimed that true security and consolation could only be found in God.

In places like Uganda, Kenya and Haiti seeing so much intense, unfathomable suffering shook my notions of security and unmasked my true helplessness and inability to control anything in life. When you look, really look, at the suffering on full display in these places, you are forced to clearly see that life is unfair, often brutally unfair. In the midst of so much suffering, our flimsy ideas of God are blown to pieces. God’s seeming silence in the face of such wide-spread suffering and violence is baffling. Yet Jesus is found and encountered at the foot of the cross. The mystery of love and the mystery of the cross are one and the same. The inflowing of God’s love purges and transforms…and it hurts.

We must die to our self-centeredness, must divest our ego and put on the mind of Christ and grow in love for all of humanity and give our lives, as Jesus gave his life, so that others, even our enemies, may live. Jesus wants to shatter our complacency toward the suffering poor, wants us to see and feel their suffering; he wants us to renounce our own security and share our love and material possessions with those who have nothing. When we let go of our own security and put our trust in God alone, the Kingdom of God shall expand and suffering shall decrease.


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