Where Is God Amidst Our Suffering?
Shortly before Jesus died on the cross He cried out to God the Father in anguish saying “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?” (Matthew 27:46). This remarkable question asked by Jesus is important to properly understand as it has great implications for us in our daily life of following Christ.
Why Did Jesus Ask This Question?: Jesus had been in constant fellowship with God the Father throughout every day of His life. Prior to this moment on the cross, He had never experienced the silence of God. However, once Jesus took upon himself the past, present, and future sins of mankind, God’s holiness required separation from sin. In the moment Jesus cried out “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?”, His fellowship with God was broken and for the first time in His life He experienced the silence of God amidst His suffering. This does not mean God abandoned him. In fact, just moments later Jesus committed His Spirit into God’s hands and was reunited with Him in Heaven upon His death.
Does That Mean God Is Not With Us In Our Suffering?: It is important to not mistake silence for absence. The Scriptures assure us of many things and one of them is that as followers of Christ, He will never leave us nor for forsake us (Hebrews 13:5). Often when we experience trials and periods of suffering in our lives it seems as if God is not hearing our prayers or if He is, His response to us is silence. However, it is during these quiet moments in our life that we must remember that though He may seem silent at the time, He is no less present with us through every trial and tribulation. We stand on His Word and His promises in faith, knowing that God is sovereign in ALL things even those times when we are suffering. He never changes, He’s always in control and He is always trustworthy. Nothing can change His attributes and even when we may feel distant from the Lord, we cannot let our feelings override the truth.
God Desires Our Honesty:
God desires us to be honest with Him in our prayer life. While He already knows what’s on our mind it is important that we open up and share with him our desires, our trials, our sins and our worship. Sometimes in life we do feel alone and that God is not with us in difficult situations. However, we know in Scripture that is not the case. Therefore, while we sometimes ask God “where He is?” in our life, we must always push through those doubts and feelings to cling to what we KNOW is true. Jesus IS with us through ALL things.
Father God, thank you for being with me in all things whether good or bad. Help me to trust you and your promises when difficult times arise in life. Help me to never allow my feelings to cloud the truth of your Word. In Jesus name, Amen.