Where is God in the Hatian earthquake?

That question is one many struggle with in regards to not only natural disasters of national proportions but also in our own lives and personal struggles, losses, and disappointments. “Where is God?” To ask the question is to acknowledge our own powerlessness over much of life and the world. My own experience of powerlessness is that it leaves us at a turning point – we either turn and walk away because there are no easy answers or none that we like, or we turn and walk toward one another and God. God is not in the answers. Rather, God is in the circumstances of life – in the victims crushed under buildings, in those who work to rescue, in the tears and suffering of the survivors, in the compassion and generosity, in the love, in the hope, and in the resurrection. There are no simple answers. There is only relationship.

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  1. A good question. But, in asking that question do we make the mistake of expecting God to behave like we think God should behave. In fact, God has never behaved the way humans expect. Are such tragedies then the will of God? I do not know the answer to the question, but can only trust that God uses all things for his own purposes and redeems all things in his own way.

    Pax Vobis


    1. Thanks for your insightful comment. I agree that “we make the mistake of expecting God to behave like we think God should behave.” Perhaps the better question is, “How are we to be with God in the midst of the earthquake?”

      Peace, Mike+


  2. I live in Zimbabwe where we have not suffered a cataclysmic disaster but where violence and horror are part of our daily lives. Years ago we began by asking “where are you Lord?” and then as the years went by we asked another question “how long O Lord” and are tempted to despair.

    I have learned that these are questions that the Israelites asked over and over, you hear them all through the Old Testament and they echo in the Psalms. Are there answers? Not easy ones I think. However I have been surprised to learn the God is IN our suffering and for me that is part of the meaning of the crucifixion.

    So for me, now “where” and “how long” are the wrong questions.


    1. Gariele, thank you for your beautiful words and teaching. Though I have known loss and suffering you speak from an experience that I have not had. I wonder though if we move from “where” to “how long” to “thank you” – not for the suffering but for God’s presence with us in the suffering.

      Peace be with you, Mike+


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