Prayer Reflection – September 2022
Christ Suffers with Us
One of the most common questions that seems to arise when I am with other people discussing matters of faith is why do people suffer, sometimes through no fault of their own. I have also felt it is a difficult question to answer. However, recently I found an explanation and reasoning that provided a response to this question when asked. I hope it might provide you with an answer too. With thanks to Richard Rohr and his article from his Daily Meditation from the Centre for Action and Contemplation.
Father Richard reminds us that while we are invited to be in solidarity with the pain of others, God carries all pain:
“Many people question how there can be a good God or a just God in the presence of so much evil and suffering in the world—about which God appears to do nothing. Exactly how is God loving and sustaining what God created? That is our dilemma.
I believe—if I am to believe Jesus—that God is suffering love. If we are created in God’s image, and if there is so much suffering in the world, then God must also be suffering. How else can we understand the revelation of the cross and that the central Christian logo is a naked, bleeding, suffering man?
Many of the happiest and most peaceful people I know love a crucified God who walks with crucified people, and thus reveals and redeems their plight as his own. For them, Jesus does not observe human suffering from a distance; he is somehow in human suffering, with us and for us.
The suffering that we carry is our solidarity with the one, universal longing of all humanity, and thus it can teach us great compassion and patience with both ourselves and others. Some mystics even go so far as to say that there is only one suffering; it is all the same, and it is all the suffering of God (see Colossians 1:24).”
Please do contact me if you have any feedback, or would like any prayers said for you, your family, friends, the people in your place of employment or neighbourhood. Also, if you would be willing to participate in the “This Time Tomorrow” slot in the Notices on a Sunday, please do let me know.
With love and blessings and THANK YOU, Angie Foster (firstname.lastname@example.org)