Why Does God Allow Hardships In Our Lives?
Why Does God Allow Hardships In Our Lives?
“I thought that when I became a Christian, God would make everything better.” “I thought that with God, all things are possible.” “I am a Christian, why am I having so much trouble in life?” “Why am I having so many temptations?”
It is true that God does want the best for His children. He wants you to receive the best He has to offer because you are now one of His cherished children.
You Changed But The World Did Not
When you became a Christian, you did become a new creation. 2 Corinthians.5:17 (NIV): “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!” Everything about you is new. However, you still live in the same old world.
God changed you because you asked Him to. But He does not force change on the others around you. All the sin and corruption that was around you before you were saved is still there. The destructive forces that you set in motion through your sinful life have not disappeared.
You have a new life ahead of you but it will still be lived in the old sinful world that you used to live in. You have much to learn to receive the best that God has to offer you. You have old habits that need to be unlearned. You need to develop new habits. You need to establish new patterns of living.
We Need To Become As Little Children
Matthew 18:3 (NIV) says: “And he (Jesus) said: "I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.” Jesus was not saying that we should lose all of our intelligence or rational thinking. We are not to act like little children, we are still to be adults. He was referring to one very special trait that little children have.
Just as small children do not learn new things automatically and immediately, neither do we as new Christians. If we protect them all the time, they will never learn to take care of themselves. Children will fall many times before they learn to walk properly. We need to realize that God created us to learn through experience. We may wish that God would simply just zap all new knowledge into us and change us instantly. But God did not create us in this way. He created us as free creatures so we must do our own learning.
Not only do we have to learn what we must do, we often have to fight for what God promises us. We live in a world that is ruled by Satan. This is why he is called the Prince of this world as in John 12:31 “Now is the time for judgment on this world; now the prince of this world will be driven out.” Satan wants to destroy all the true children of God. And since God created us as free creatures, it is up to us to overcome Satan and his plans for this world.
The Hebrews had to fight for the Promised Land
Look at what God had to do with the Hebrews when He brought them out of the land of Egypt. They had been slaves for 430 years. They had lived as slaves. They thought like slaves. They were used to doing only what they were told to do. They were used to having the Egyptians protect them.
As God brought them up to the promised land, all they did was grumble and complain because of the hard journey. When Moses went up the mountain to be with God, they constructed an idol, like they had been used to in Egypt. Their mentality had not changed. They were stuck in their old ways.
God told them that if they obeyed His decrees and obeyed His commandments, He would give them everything they ever needed. But they would not trust God. They thought that God would just give them the promised land. They thought that God would do everything for them. When they found out that they had to conquer the new land themselves, they refused to do so. God had given them the opportunity for a new life but they were not ready to accept it.
So God let them wander for 40 years in the desert. Why did He do this? He needed to raise up a generation that thought like conquerors, not like slaves. He had to train them to be a people that could conquer and occupy their new land.
God created us as free creatures. He will never take that freedom away from us. He will not force us to act or think in a certain way, even to receive the gifts that He offers us. We are free creatures. We have to change ourselves. God will not do it for us. He will help us and show us what we need to do. But He will not do it for us.
Hardships are to Strengthen us.
Just like the Hebrews, God leads us through hardships to teach us to think like conquerors and free people and not be slaves to our past. A soldier in training goes through many hardships so that he will be able to defeat the enemy and not be conquered by the enemy. He must learn to think on his own, make his own decisions and act on his own. If he does not, he will be defeated by the enemy. While he is doing this, his superiors continue to give him guidance and instruction.
When we become a Christian, God will do the same for us. He teaches us what we need know through His Holy Bible. He teaches us how to live as Christians. We are taught how to love God. He shows us how to defeat the demonic pressures in our life. God shows us everything we need to know to be mature Christians. But we must act on what God teaches us.
This is the reason that God leads us through hardships. He gives us experiences that will strengthen us as Christians. He wants us to learn to think and act on our own. He wants us to know what to do when Satan thrown obstacles in our way and tries to trip us up. He wants us to be mature children of God. God wants us to defeat the enemy, not wait for Him to do it.
Remember, God created us to be us to be his friends and companions, not His slaves. He wants us be mature Christians just like we want our own children to grow up and be mature men and women. We enjoy children. But it is not until they stop being dependant on us and become mature adults that they make good friends and companions. This is what God wants from us.
But God will never allow us to experience more than we can handle. We need to remember 1 Corinthians 10:13 (NIV): “No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it.”
God does not want us to suffer or face hardships. Thus, God watches us, just as we watch our children fall and even sometimes get hurt. But we allow them to learn so that they can walk and run and be happy and be productive in life. Then we rejoice with them when they reach mature adulthood and are able to relate to us on a mature level.
God is the same with us. God wants us to be mature Christians so we can find the joy and happiness that He offers to us. He helps us through the hardships of life so we can finally be mature Christians and walk and have real fellowship with Him. For some of us, it may not happen until we finally get to heaven. But it will be worth it.