From Kelly Crawford:
Personal trials always push us to answer theological questions–to unpack the character of God and to wrestle with the hard facts.
Is suffering the judgement of God? Is it meant for me personally, or is it a corporate judgement? Does God allow it or cause it? Is God testing my faith or is suffering purely random and coincidental?
From what we know in Scripture, it can actually be any number of things. In the OT, we see God often “smite” people with His wrath. Intentional judgement. We also see God “allow” trials for testing, as in the case of Job, a “perfect and upright man”. We see him bring suffering to show forth His glory (John 9), that “the works of God may be made manifest in him”. And often it is a simple law of nature at work in our fallen world that brings disaster and suffering on the just and the unjust alike.
But in all these things, two things are certain: nothing happens outside the sovereign omniscience of God and He works ALL THINGS together for the good of those who love Him and are called according to His purpose.
I can testify to seeing this principle lived out in the lives of many others, and now am seeing it in my own life.
Read the entire post HERE.