"Why?" Is the first question that runs through my mind and the second, although I hate to admit it, is - "How does God allow such bad things to happen to good people?"
It's an age old question that's pretty much an overwhelming concept, but is there an answer?
A friend from work has a brother who is the minister of a beautiful old church in Charlotte, North Carolina. Her brother has known his calling for many years and before their mother passed from cancer two decades ago, she gave him her Bible to keep and use to spread love in this world. He's held onto that Bible along with his own, cherishing them both, everyday since.
That same church recently caught on fire. Flames engulfed the massive walls, eventually burning it to the ground. The congregation gathered, but couldn't stop it. They knew God wasn't in the structure or the building, but why? Why did it have to happen?
Through heartache, sweat and tears, they began clearing the remains with the spirit of regrowth and rebirth.
In the midst of all the destruction, piles and piles of burnt, charred debris, what do you suppose they found? Two bibles, one his and one their Mother's that he's held dear his entire life. My friend Sarah showed me a picture of the two and I couldn't believe my eyes. In all of that damage, the entire building destroyed through the intensity of heat and flames, how was it possible that two books made of paper remained, perfectly untouched?
Did God allow the destruction? Did He allow the despair caused to so many who have gathered in that place for generations? Why wouldn't He stop it from happening?
I don't know.
What I do know, is that God was still there.
In the middle of the darkest times, the worst times of our lives when it seems everything is literally falling and burning down around us, He's there. Reminding us to trust in Him no matter what the reason, even if we can't possibly begin to understand.
He is there with us with a love that's impossible to destroy.