Monday, May 19, 2014

Whom the Lord Loveth He Chasteneth

"If God is so loving, why does He let bad things happen to good people?"

I can't tell you how often I have heard this very question in my mission. And you know what, it's really not a bad question. I admit that this very inquiry has entered my mind plenty of times before.

Every single person we meet on the street recounts to us in ill or difficult event in their life that has either led them toward or away from God. Just this week alone we met a man lost his only son due to a car accident, a woman who lost her job unfairly, a mother whose daughter is going down a wayward path, a family who is struggling to make ends meet.

It has been so hard for me seeing all these different circumstances. And I'd be lying to say that is is always easy to put a smile on my face as I meet person after person telling us about their sad situations... I've developed such a love for people that I sometimes put their burdens upon my own shoulders. I've never seen or heard of
so many different ways of people being tried and tested in their faith. And I think the hardest part of all is that they don't know why it is happening, or at least they don't know how much Heavenly Father loves them and wants to help them.

Job, the faithful devoted man of God in ancient biblical times, claims, "Behold, happy is the man whom God correcteth: therefore despise not thou the chastening of the Almighty..."

I've been thinking about his story a lot lately. Though rather prosperous and wealthy, Job remained humble and loyal to His Creator. Eventually, Job loses his wealth, his livestock, his children, and even his health. But Job has cried out:

"...For I know that my redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth: And though after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God..."

It reminds me so much of the people I meet here. Some of them have unmoving faith in God, even after all that has happened.

Job continues: "...But he knoweth the way that I take: when he hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold."

I can recall my early Seminary days as Sister Martin taught us the beautiful analogy of how the diamond is formed. Do you know how diamonds are made? If I remember right, It begins as coal, and it is with much heat, pressure and time that diamonds result.

We all have divine potential. We are here to become as gold or diamonds; our goal is to reach perfection one day. But the road isn't easy. It never is and it never will be. We will encounter lots of pressure, trials, hardships. We are going to be quite heated sometimes. And it'll require lots of time and an abundance of patience.

But these experiences will only be "but a small moment" and if we humble ourselves and endure it well, the process of correction will be complete. Though we may not have been heading down a terrible path,
though we may be doing a lot of the things we are supposed to do, the point is that The Lord knows there is progression for you yet; There is an even a better path in which we need to take.

Why do bad things happen to good people?

Because God loves us enough to correct us. He loves us enough to strengthen our faith, to accelerate our growth, to help us learn. Just like how if an airplane is only a few degrees off course, it will be hundreds of miles away from the destination. We are always to be progressing. Sometimes, we are not so much needed to be "corrected" but rather we are simply being tried to increase our faith.

I testify that we are loved enough to be chastened. If we are even a "few degrees off," The Lord loves us enough to address it.  When things don't seem to be going our way, remember the Lord's way is much much higher than ours. He sees the bigger picture. Have faith that there are good, no BETTER things to come! :)

Love you all.

Hermana Blanchard

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