Why do bad things happen to good people? From Coffee Hour @ Chicklit Power (part of the “If I could have coffee with God . . .” series)

Welcome to Coffee Hour @ Chicklit Power and thanks for stopping by. If you are joining us for the first time today, we are in the midst of a sort of coffee hour with God, and we are looking for some answers to the very tough question, “Why do bad things happen to good people?” and I was in the midst of a true story. Grab your coffee and go to a comfy and quiet place and let’s see if we can wrap up this detour and get to the rest of the story. 🙂

Let’s look at the New Testament definition (Greek) for comfort. Ooh, this is definitely enlightening: To call near, to invite; to veil/cover, but listen to this: “Parakaleo” (the Greek translation for comfort) “literally denotes ‘to call to one’s side,’ hence to call to one’s aid. It is used for every kind of calling to a person which is meant to produce a particular effect,” which is why the various meanings, such as exhort, desire, call for . . . (I’m thinking that this is where the definition of ‘repent’ comes into play.)

All of these definitions indicate some sort of companion, which is interesting. 🙂 Again, I have to ask, what, where and who do we find comfort in? The verse,” The Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God,” indicates where our true source of comfort should come from in our times of discomfort, disillusionment, et cetera. Now let’s get back to my friend who has had a lot of tribulation in her life.

It was just a couple of weeks ago that I had posted something on Facebook about looking for an assistant and she responded. I was actually shocked that she had responded. She lives about an hour and a half away, but she indicated that she would like the position. I sort of joked with her, thinking she couldn’t be serious. Well, evidently she was because her retort back to me was nothing less than sharp. I tried to message her and ask her what was up, to which she responded, she would never bring it up again. I knew something was rocking her world and it wasn’t me so I left it alone.

Two days later, on my way to a book signing, He put it on my heart to call her and check on her. I didn’t want to, but I did. That conversation led to me sending her a book, which led to her leaving me another message on Facebook, only without the defensive edge this time. 🙂 She wanted to get together to discuss our perspectives on life.

To make that long story short, she came out to a book signing I did in Ontario and it wasn’t a meeting that I was necessarily looking forward to, but I got prayed up because I did recognize that it wasn’t about me; that there was a bigger picture here.

Within a few minutes of her arriving, she handed me a three-page summary of why she thinks and feels the way that she does. It wasn’t like there was anyone running over to buy my book, so I began to read her summary, offering up a prayer for understanding as I did.

After three paragraphs, I could see the bigger picture, and my heart really did ache and break for her. I asked if I could write on the copy. She emphatically confirmed that I could because it was my copy. She had another copy of her own. I began to make little notes all over her summary, and about five minutes later, I looked up and very-straightforwardly said: “I can see why you feel the way that you do; I don’t agree with you, but I do understand. This is a lot of deep stuff here and it is going to require a lot of thought and prayer so I don’t want to respond today and” —

“I wasn’t looking for you to respond,” she said. “I just wanted you to understand why I feel the way I do.” Her eyes welled up and I repeated my earlier statement.

“I do understand, most definitely, why you feel the way that you do; I just don’t agree. We have a lot more in common than I realized. 🙂 I will tell you, though, that because of all I’ve been through, I do have something to say for each thing that you’ve listed here, but I need to pray about this and spend some time on it.” I also reminded her that I loved her and had never, ever intentionally done anything to hurt her, to which she agreed, again with tears in her eyes.

She stayed with me for a couple more hours and we got caught up on other things. As we talked, I was reminded of her love for travel and some light bulb went on inside my head. I asked her to help me organize a little book tour up north to include a couple of Barnes and Nobles and Starbucks, too. I gave her the starting and end points and was excited to see her come to life a little more.

I asked her to join me for lunch. After we had ordered, she began telling me about these glass angels that she had made for this charitable organization that helps people deal with their grief over the loss of their loved ones. As she described this project, her eyes danced with life, something I hadn’t seen in her for years. That collided with a major realization and my mouth dropped. I reached out to touch her on the arm and I totally interrupted her because I was so excited. “All these years, you’ve not been doing what He created you to do. You’ve chased degrees, jobs, but you’ve not worked with the talent He’s given you. You haven’t been living your purpose!” My eyes welled up and she looked dumb-founded with the same realization. It was indescribable.

Oops, it’s time to let you go, but come back Monday for more on this series within a series! 🙂

Excitedly,

Evinda

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5 Responses to “Why do bad things happen to good people? From Coffee Hour @ Chicklit Power (part of the “If I could have coffee with God . . .” series)”

  1. Kara Lopus says:

    This is a well thought out article that I have bookmarked for future reference. Have a wonderful.

  2. admin says:

    Kara,
    thanks for stopping by Coffee Hour with Chicklit Power and thank you for your words of encouragement:)

  3. Janessa Parramore says:

    Good post… But how do you deal with friends who argue with this post?

  4. admin says:

    Janessa,
    I have some who differ in opinion, but never argue.
    Thanks for coming by 🙂
    Evinda

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