By Bob Stains
I have always struggled with why God allows bad things to happen: crippling disease, suffering, grief, etc. I still do. I probably always will, to some extent. I am deeply suspicious of anyone who tells me -- in books or in person -- that they have "THE answer" to what I think is an eternal mystery. This is one of those things that maybe Paul was speaking about when he said "we now know only in part...." The mind of God and all. A bit bigger than ours.
But there are bits of suffering and darkness -my own or others' -- that sometimes fall into my hands like bread and feed me in ways I never could imagine. That's what I want to focus on now.
A couple of weeks ago I wrote about "the four-sentence challenge" to tell our stories of being touched by God. A Sunday before writing, I had given this challenge to a group that I was working with in another church. It was a tight time-frame: 45 minutes to help a group of 20 t…