Trouble Just Comes

It’s Narcissist Friday!

I recently had some serious work done on my car. Before the problem was fixed, it caused other problems. The fix cost about $300, but the problems it caused added another $400. One thing led to another.

And that’s life.

I am a simple person. I believe the story told in the Bible. I believe that God made the world good. Everything worked the way it was supposed to. I don’t know how long that lasted, but I believe that sin ended the harmony. From the point where sin entered the world, things have not been as they should be.

That change affected all of creation. Dangers and illnesses and troubles of all kinds came because of that change. Broken relationships, broken lives, broken climate, broken systems all stem from that point. Starting at that first sin, people have had to work for protection and provision. The world no longer works as it did.

The world is broken. People are broken. Trouble is part of that brokenness. It doesn’t come because God sends it. Nor are you the cause.

Legalists love cause and effect. They suggest that trouble comes not just because of that first sin, but because of your sin. If you are ill, they say you must have done something wrong. If someone hurts you, it must be your fault somehow. If you lose something, you didn’t deserve it in the first place.

In their minds and hearts, God is a cruel judge. When you do something wrong, you should expect punishment. And, conversely, if you experience trouble, it must be some punishment you deserve. God sees and judges the brokenness in you.

And so many people have gone through tragedies believing that they are somehow at fault. They don’t know what they did wrong, or maybe they can point to something, but they believe the trouble is what they deserve. It is hard for them to believe that God loves them.

Listen: God does love you. He doesn’t want to hurt you. He wants to give good to you. The world is broken. Bad things happen. Trouble is part of the struggle the world is in. You and I are caught in it just because we live here.

It isn’t your fault. Sure, you might have made some foolish decisions and, yes, there are consequences for bad decisions. But the tornado that destroyed your home was not sent by God because you did something bad. The flat tire, Covid, the unexpected expense or illness—these are not punishment.

People are broken, too. They make stupid or mean decisions and hurt you. That’s not your fault. That’s their fault. When someone abuses you or deceives you, that’s on them.

This is important. The truth is that God loves you. He is on your side. He walks with you through trouble and suffering. He is not a cruel judge looking for ways to punish your sins. In fact, He sent Jesus to take your sins away because He loved you.

Trust Him!

10 Comments

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10 responses to “Trouble Just Comes

  1. Amy

    This is such a simple truth, yet so many make it harder than it should be.
    People will hurt us, illness will fall upon us, hardships will come, but that’s just life. And through it all, God simply loves us and is our only constant in this ever-failing world.

    Thank you, I needed to read these words today. ❤

  2. Thank you, Pastor Dave. This is so important. Lately, life has been a series of trials for my husband and me. Health issues that are all a part of aging in this broken world. And the ongoing, record breaking wild fires here in New Mexico are not helping.

  3. Pamela

    This is such a good, and encouraging reminder that we all need to hear again and again, as this is not the message in life that we get constantly. 🙂
    Thank you, Pastor Dave, for a refreshing “word”. Pamela

  4. Thank you for this reminder. For 60 years I lived under the cause-effect teaching of legalism. It made me into a bitter, phony Christian. Thank God, I had slowly been redeemed from that mindset.

  5. Janett

    How do you respond to the accusation of God is a cruel God, because He knew all this would happen and He allowed it. How do you explain His decision. In light of some pain which is excruciating, why create evil? Knowing This would be the result?

  6. This is the exact reminder I needed. Thank you, Pastor Dave. Yours was a car; mine is plumbing. God has brought more peace to my heart through you. May He bless you.

  7. Nia Finley

    Hi Dave, thanks so much for your blog. Its been a few years since I emailed you..a lot has happened, but it still seems like I get stuck when trouble comes. God has brought me through so much, in everything.. and slowly been unwinding all the lies I’ve believed.

    But still. When there’s more than normal trouble in my life…like now…I spiral into a panic attack and can’t think straight. And when it clears a little, my thoughts are always defaulting to everything you wrote about.

    I was in a cult as well as DV.. and the way we were controlled was through guilt and shame.. and circumstances confirmed that. But still. Its been so many years, and I default to it.

    I’m just telling you because your article is exactly what my thoughts are today, and I’m not above water yet. And then I’m so ashamed because of all Jesus has done for me, he doesn’t deserve for me to be so afraid.

    The thing that bothers me the most is that in the cult, and then when I was married, no one stood up for me in the church; it was the opposite. So my mind is preprogrammed to respond to that as group shaming, and always was what God thought. I’ve left that buried because I’ve been afraid to ask Jesus what he thinks. I’ve been asking him.. and I feel the world swirling around me.

    Thanks for listening. Just needed to tell someone who understood. I need Jesus to help me.

    Nia Finley

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