Are not five sparrows sold for two farthings, and not one of them is forgotten before God?
But even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not therefore: ye are of more value than many sparrows. Luke 12:5,6 (KJV)
This has been a hard year for one class in our small high school. They have lost two classmates, one to a vehicle accident, the other to a fire. A third classmate’s father died in a plane crash. All this happened within the space of two months.
When tragedies seem to come in bunches like this, it is very common to ask where God was in all this. Why did He let it happen? Doesn’t he care?
We are not always privy to the thoughts of God. He tells us there are things we cannot fathom. So we do not know how and why these tragedies happen. Sometimes, it is the carelessness of a moment’s prank. Sometimes it’s a flaw in the wiring of an old house. Sometimes the enemy has something to do with it.
There was a man in the land of Uz, whose name was Job; and that man was perfect and upright, and one that feared God, and eschewed evil. Job 1:11 (KJV)
Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan came also among them.
And the Lord said unto Satan, Whence comest thou? Then Satan answered the Lord, and said, From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it.
And the Lord said unto Satan, Hast thou considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil?
Then Satan answered the Lord, and said, Doth Job fear God for nought?
Hast not thou made an hedge about him, and about his house, and about all that he hath on every side? thou hast blessed the work of his hands, and his substance is increased in the land.
But put forth thine hand now, and touch all that he hath, and he will curse thee to thy face.
And the Lord said unto Satan, Behold, all that he hath is in thy power; only upon himself put not forth thine hand. So Satan went forth from the presence of the Lord. Job 1:6-12 (KJV)
We do not know all there is to know about life and death. We can only know that whatever happens, God is not surprised. He is here every moment. He will be with us every moment. He has prepared for the things we cannot see in advance.
When my eldest daughter was about twelve, I let her and the six-year-old go to the grocery store about four blocks from our home. They had to cross a highway and would be out of sight for half an hour or so with the walk and the errand. My husband’s spinster aunt was aghast. Didn’t I care about the girls? There was so much that could happen. Wasn’t I afraid for them.
My response to her was that they were God’s daughters, lent to me for a season. That I could trust Him with them because I knew He loved them at least as much as I did. And perhaps a smidgen more because of His larger capacity for love. She just shook her head. And the girls ran the errand without incident.
It is not easy to walk through the loss of a child – no matter the age of that child. But we can take comfort knowing that God is always with our children and is so intimately entwined with their welfare that he numbers the hairs on their heads.
We do not know why and how some of these tragedies happen. But we know that You are always with Your children, every moment, no matter the physical circumstance. We thank You for Your love – for them and for us. Help us to model for the world the proper response for a Christian to have in times of crisis.
In Jesus’ most precious name.