Yet when I hoped for good, evil came;
when I looked for light, then came darkness.
Job 30:26 (NIV)
Why is it that bad things happen to good people?
Why did my friend and his wife get hit by a drunk driver? He was a great husband and father. Why did he languish in a vegetative state for years? Why did those six sweet kids have to endure that loss?
Why does my friend have to endure such deep mental illness? He’s such a great guy. So full of life and so much to offer the world. Why did he end up getting stuck with crazy?
Why was it that marriage was such a struggle from the start? How did I end up the victim of this piece of false advertising? Two young people who love God and have nothing but the best of intentions, desires, and love for one another find that there is a deep fissure in the bedrock of relationship that drains life rather than filling it.
How is it that he ended up with a rare brain tumor? Why did his whole family have to endure the fallout of his messed up brain and behaviors?
Why did their baby die?
Why did she have to die? How on earth can someone so young and so full of life and potential end up with terminal cancer? There are so many who deserve death more than she does, and so much life that she has to offer the world. Why her?
Why would he lose his job? He’s the most genuine man of faith and has more integrity than any other three friends combined. He works harder than most anyone I know. Why did he lose his job and have his entire life put at financial risk while those other materialistic, lying, cheating sloths continue to rake in the big bucks?
Why is it that her womb remains empty? Why didn’t our babies ever make it? How is it that a homeless teen crack addict gets pregnant, repeatedly, and it just won’t happen for us?
Why do bad things happen to good people? Each one of these examples stems from experiences on my own journey. The further I traverse the path the more examples I add to the pile of experiences that lead me back to Job. That’s why Job’s story has resonated with humanity through the millennia. His question is our question. We all seek to understand the answer to this simple, unfathomable query.