This topic is a can of worms. I will tell you ahead of time that I cannot possibly touch on every aspect of The Problem of Evil. That's a big topic in Christian apologetics, if you want to look into it further. My husband is the apologist, I'm just sharing from my heart. My main point here is to encourage someone who may have just lived through a nightmare. Or to the girl who received life-changing news. Or to the one who has yet to.
What's the worst day you've ever had? The worst news you've ever been given? For me, it had been the end of a friendship or the day I found out my grandma had cancer. It's not that the end of a meaningful relationship isn't sad. And just because my grandma was an old lady doesn't mean her death hurt any less. But those things easily took a back seat to the actual Worst Day of My Life. I've shared about June's life and her journey to get here. The day we found out there were problems, the day after Easter 2016, that became the Worst in a way I had never experienced.
I'm not here to say my Worst is any worse or better than your Worst. Maybe you haven't had that Worst day yet. I hope you don't, but I'm guessing you will at some point. My challenge for you isn't to compare your days with anyone else. I'm talking about this because it will be important how you handle the day when it comes. It will be important how you can support others when they have theirs.
As a Christian, my hope is found in God, but I still have to endure life on this planet. It's the only life I've been given. For me, I could not imaging living through what I did without God. I know there are many people who do not have a religious system to lean on in tough times, but for me, I could not have made it to today without mine. So let everything I write be seen through the lens of a believer in Jesus Christ. If that doesn't apply to you, I appreciate you sticking with the post up to this point. And feel free to continue, at least to learn a little more about me. It is not my intention to alienate anyone.
So how do you handle the Worst when it comes along? What do you do? Here are some things to help.
1. Pray. I am telling you, I have never prayed like that in my life. Complete and total openness with God and calling out to him. I prayed for peace, but I mostly prayed for His will to be done. That is difficult because His will doesn't always line up with our wishes. I learned quickly to just listen. No, I don't hear God's voice, but if all one does is ask and ask and ask, there's never time to receive a response. I remember simply praying, "Help me." I probably said that about a billion times.
"Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus." 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
2. Lean on others. My husband was a rock for me, but of course, he was also dealing. So, my mom basically became the person who scraped me up off the floor. My sister in law also came to me in my darkest days to help me out. Side note: that changed our relationship. I feel a closeness with her now that we didn't have before. I am thankful for her.
3. Read scripture. There are many comforting verses we always see pop up for difficult situations, but the ones about the majesty and authority of God were most helpful to me. It kept me in check. Made me remember who was in control. I encourage you to find more than the more common verses and dig deep into the Bible. God's people have been enduring hardship since the fall of man. He has been faithful! There's a lot of good stuff to learn there!
"Hear my cry, O God; listen to my prayer. From the ends of the earth I call to you, I call as my heart grows faint; lead me to the rock that is higher than I." Psalm 61:1-2
4. Don't lose hope. Even during the moments of gut wrenching pain, I still held onto the thought that everything would be okay. We humans are resilient. Remembering that humans have survived so much throughout time, it reminded me that I could weather my storm. This is easier said than done, but you have to try. If there's no hope for a potential positive outcome, what will keep you wanting to live? It is always worth it to keep going and living. Always.
I know this info won't change the world, and believe me, I am NOT AN EXPERT in handling personal struggle. I still have moments regularly and probably will for some time. However, if I am able to help one person, I am glad to share my story. And when you have an opportunity to share yours, I pray it will fall on the ears of one in desperate need.