I received the phone call on Friday afternoon at 3 PM. “Good news, they agreed to settle.” I thanked my attorney and slumped in my chair. For nearly six months my attorney and I had been embroiled in my first (and hopefully last) malpractice case. It was an unusual lawsuit that appeared to point to a computer software glitch as the culprit. Nonetheless, the plaintiff persisted until the attorneys finally agreed to settle the case, on the eve of going to trial.
It was one of the most painful and difficult periods of my professional career and although it occurred nearly twenty years ago, the memories still burn bright. During these six months, I experienced a true clinical depression. I spent countless hours talking about the case with my wife and colleagues. I would second guess myself and replay the case in my mind. Could I have done anything differently? Were other patients harmed by this computer error? And at the heart of my questioning, why is this happening to me, God?
Thousands of years ago, Job asked the same question of God. For thirty four chapters, Job debates the reasons for his pain and suffering with four other friends who offer their explanations why Job is suffering. Why does the Book of Job continue for so long? Why indeed? When I am going through a trial, how many hours have I spent agonizing over why these events are happening to me? During this lawsuit, my wife and my friends commiserated with me. Yet, far more time was spent alone, drowning in my sorrows, desperately seeking an answer and a solution. The sobering answer is this is our nature. When we perceive that we are unjustly suffering we search for a reason, any reason, that will help to explain and ultimately cope with our situation.
The true tragedy is like Job, when I suffer, I can lose sight of who God truly is. My finite mind cannot begin to comprehend the infinite wisdom of an omnipotent God. Yet, in my futility, I will challenge and question God, thinking that surely He owes me an explanation.
I know that you can do anything, and no one can stop you. You asked, “Who is this that questions my wisdom with such ignorance?” It is I—and I was talking about things I knew nothing about, things far too wonderful for me.
Job 42:2-3 (NLT)
God owes no one an explanation for His actions. I only exist because of His grace and mercy. Instead of questioning God with so many words, I should be thanking Him with my life. I should cling to His promise that all things will work together for good for those who place their trust and faith in Jesus Christ.
Love and trust the Lord; seek His will in your life.