Why God doesn’t say why

Posted: February 3, 2013 in Hard Questions, Life
Tags: , , , , , ,

I was talking to a woman at church today who said that she’d been asking God “why” a lot lately and didn’t feel like He was saying much of anything. I think most of us have been at that place at least once in our lives. I’ve been thinking about it a lot this afternoon, though, and at the risk of sounding a little callous, I think I know at least two reasons why God doesn’t say why all that much.

1. “Why?” is often an expression of dissatistfaction rather than a request for enlightenment. Think about when children ask “why?” Sometimes they really want to know why, but sometimes the question is just a way of expressing displeasure and of pushing back in hopes that mom or dad will change their minds. I’m not saying it’s always that way with kids or that it’s always that way when we ask God “why?” as adults, but sometimes it is. And even the best parents sometimes end up saying “because I told you so” when they understand that the question isn’t really a plea for illumination but rather an expression of mistrust.

2. “Why?” is never as good a question as “What?” One thing I’ve learned in my 20+ years walking with God is that when I stop asking God why something happened and start asking God what He is doing in something, I’m much more likely to get a clear answer. I think it’s because “what?” takes our eyes off the circumstances themselves in a way that “why?” never can.

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