Do I believe in God? Yes. The God of the Bible, Who is a Trinity? Yes. And I believe the Bible is the Word of God, His --testimony to mankind, so-to-speak. . . .
Do I believe He is sovereign--the Creator in control of all things? Yes. Does anything happen outside of His will? No. And I do believe His Word which makes clear that everything is done and for the purpose of His glory. . . .
At the same time, from my perspective . . . I see a world that is writhing under the oppression of evil. The injustice, the cruelty, the suffering, the criminality I can clearly see--is terrible to behold. The pain, the abuse, the treachery and evil and violence done to men, women, children, animals even . . . is difficult to fathom--how it can be . . . in a world where God is sovereign over all. . . ? And that all things are for the purpose of glorifying God.
But because I believe what God's Word reveals about Him and the nature of this reality I figure there must be a way to reconcile such difficulties.
And what I have concluded thus far is this. While pain and suffering are indeed very real . . . I suspect, in the bigger scheme of things, they are not as bad as they seem to us. I think it is something like . . . how, for instance, a child will desperately fear something they are expected to do (ie., learn to ride a bike) which later becomes an easy and natural thing. Or the child has a terror of the dark. There is nothing there, but to the child the fear is as real as if a horrible, fanged monster is waiting to spring from the closet the moment the lights go out. But later, as an adult that childish fear is laughed at--and the threat seen as not so bad at all.
While pain and suffering seem huge to us now, from God's perspective and from ours in our future glorified state, they will be an infinitesimally small thing, if a thing at all . . . once we enter the gates of eternal glory.
It's not as bad as we think it is in reality. Our limited, small view magnifies it. But, from God's view it is not even worthy to be spoken of compared to the rewards we are to inherit.
Because I believe in God, and have faith that He is good and loving and righteous, I must conclude that the suffering that is possible here . . . is not quite what we perceive or experience it as it is in the larger reality.
For one thing, compared to the thousands, millions, billions and trillions of "years", so-to-speak . . . that we will live . . . in a perfect, glorified, loving state . . . in the presence of God . . . this time is less than a speck. God knows this.
It's like a child who has a sliver but is terrified to have it taken out--mortified of that necessary but quick extra pain required to tweeze or cut it out. I remember just such an incident from my own childhood. My grandpa knew the sliver had to come out as it was getting infected, but I was scared to let him fix it. He, however, knew the end from the beginning of that situation . . . and, while I protested the necessary increase of momentary pain . . . he knew better that it was a good thing to follow through and remedy the problem. Afterwards, of course, I was relieved and grateful. From my earlier, limited perspective . . . the affair was insurmountable--a horror, a pain that seemed larger than life. Now . . . I regularly dig and cut out slivers I get while working, no big deal. . . .
So when I hear people vilify a God Who would make or allow a too often hellish world such as this, with all its pain and suffering and evil, as it appears from our limited and experiential viewpoint, I suspect . . . in the grand, eternal scheme of things, it is not really quite what it seems to us here, now.
Not that it is unreal, and not to ignore the actual pain and suffering extant--but just to realize that a just, holy, good, loving, perfect God must have it all exactly as it is . . . for His unfailing purposes, whether I can perceive that now or not. It sounds flippant, but somehow I believe I can grasp it--and that it is made known to me deep within my spirit . . . that, as bad as it is, it's not as bad as we think it is or in the way we think it is . . . if you know what I mean. . . .