Pause + Pray

It’s OK to Ask ‘Why?’

White clouds in turquoise sky


A little over three years ago, a young man walked into a Walmart here in my hometown of El Paso. He opened fire in what became one of the worst mass shootings in our country. Since then, I have sat with people of faith who have asked, “Why did God allow this to happen?” It is easy to criticize those who dare to ask why, to accuse them, perhaps, of being weak in their faith. In my case, I have come to accept that I need a God with whom I can argue. Thankfully, the God of my understanding is willing to listen.


Thank you for your patience
as I struggle with making sense of tragedies.
Help me not forget what I have learned—
that in the midst of senseless tragedy,
you are there.


If you struggle with the whys in life, take a few moments to picture yourself sitting in the presence of Jesus as you struggle. Notice Jesus’ patience as he listens.

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1 thought on “It’s OK to Ask ‘Why?’”

  1. Arlene B. Muller

    YES. There are some tragedies in life that we cannot understand why a sovereign and loving GOD would permit. We might never get the answer to our “Why” question, but Our LORD understands our questions, our frustration and our struggles. The most important thing is that we bring them TO Him instead of withdrawing from Him or rejecting Him.
    Most likely our “Why did this happen?” question won’t get answered. But the LORD might very well answer a more productive question, “Now that this awful tragedy has happened, what should I do now?” and help us becoming His instruments of healing, consolation and peace and might even get involved in positive and cooperative efforts (e.g., contributing to research to find ways to cure or prevent a particular disease, establishing anti-bullying programs in schools, establishing programs to identify and counsel high risk youths and troubled families as early as possible, etc.)

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