Why earthquakes, tsunamis, floods, volcanic eruptions, famines, typhoons, epidemics, drought, and horrific accidents that kill hundreds, thousands, or even hundreds of thousands of people and cause untold suffering? Why are children and the elderly—the most innocent and helpless—often the ones to die in such tragedies? These questions have plagued the world for ages.
To truly understand the answer, it’s necessary to believe in a loving God and a better life after this one. Those who have confidence in God’s love, mercy, justice, and fairness can find comfort in knowing that God has good reasons for everything He allows—even disasters.
It is also important to understand that God knows and loves each of us individually, and that He has a plan for our lives. When people depart from this life, whether it is through a natural disaster, accident, or otherwise, it is because it is their appointed time.
For some, it is their time to be relieved of suffering. For others, it is their time to have a chance in the next life to experience God’s love and understand Him better than they ever could in this life. And for others, it is their time to be rewarded for their love and service to Him and humanity. But for those who have done grave evil for which they have not repented, it is their time to be faced with the error of their ways and the consequences of their choices.
God also uses disasters to work in different ways in the lives of the survivors. Suffering can be a catalyst. Sometimes it causes those who know God, but who have not lived up to the truth they have been given or been loving to others, to learn from it and be more mature in the future. Other times, it causes people to shift their attention from trivial pursuits to the true values of life. And if they let it, it teaches everyone lessons such as love, compassion, mercy, unselfishness, and humility. It draws those who love God closer to Him, and it brings some of the wayward to repentance and salvation, when in their suffering they cry out to Him (…)
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