Wednesday, August 23rd 2017

Camino Reflection #11

In response to our pilgrimage, one person asked how could anyone believe in a God who let babies die. Implicit in the question is the belief that death is bad. And it does seem so to those who are left bereft. Yet it may be the greatest good for those who die. For the innocents who die it may be a shortcut to fields of flowers, singing birds, endless rainbows, pure joy.

If death is not bad, the problem then is not dying, but suffering. How does one understand suffering? One only has to read The Book of Job to appreciate that suffering is difficult to understand. It once was thought that suffering was redemptive, and I suspect it can be so. More often, it seems to be a dessert of endless sand, parched earth, and prickly cactus, a no man’s land of pain. Could it be the suffering is the price, the passport, for entering into the delights of death?

Or could it be that suffering is not about the person suffering? Could it be instead about us and our call to be kind? How can anyone believe in a loving God without experiencing love in their lives?

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