Why God Allows Suffering

"God is not detached from your pain, He is right there in the middle of it."

- Pastor Sam Rijfkogel

When Pastor Sam was just twelve years old, his father died in a car accident, leaving behind his mother, Jan, with seven children to raise. Jan felt strongly that the family should praise God through the crisis. However, as a twelve-year-old, Pastor Sam struggled with how to deal with it.

Here are some helpful insights for dealing with pain and suffering:

  • God has a purpose for our lives: Although he didn’t understand it at the time, Pastor Sam is now able to see God weaving His Special Assignment through his entire family.
  • We don’t know why God allows pain and suffering, but it is not because He doesn’t love us.
  • Jesus takes our suffering seriously; He comes in the midst of it and takes it on himself.

Share Your Story:

Like Pastor Sam, many people struggle with the death of a loved one. We encourage you to draw closer to God and discover His new plan for your life. We would love to hear from you! Please consider sharing your story with us by clicking on the following link: Share Your Story

Words to Live By:


“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,”declares the LORD. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts” Isaiah 55:8-9 (KJV).


“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose” Romans 8:28 (KJV).


Dr. Ron’s Perspective:

One moment life can be rolling along smoothly and suddenly, a painful life event occurs. It catches you off guard and shakes the foundation of your world. Anxiety, fear, and depression are common emotional reactions. You might experience sleepless nights and a prevailing sense that life will never be the same.  This can also be a time of uncertainty and insecurity. You may wonder, “Why me? Why now? What does the future hold?” This can be a powerful opportunity where one’s faith can be challenged and the purpose of life contemplated, perhaps for the very first time. It is also an opportunity to reflect on the meaning of your life, strengthening your faith by putting your trust in God. Talk to him, the One who already understands your fear and wants to comfort you. He is waiting and ready to listen. You are never truly alone!

Recommended Resources:

The Problem of Pain -C.S. Lewis

The Gift of Pain -Philip Yancey

Tangled Destinies -Johanna Garrison (The story of Pastor Sam Rijfkogel’s family)

The Reason for God -Tim Keller

Real People, Real Stories, Real God®
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Why God Allows Suffering