How can I trust God when bad things happen?

Trust God’s Character

He is compassionate, merciful, gracious, kind, holy, truthful, and just. He has a purpose for everything He does.

Trust God’s Word

There are numerous examples in God’s Word of ordinary people who had to endure what seemed to be unjust and extremely difficult circumstances? For instance, when we look at the suffering of Job, of Joseph in the Old Testament, and of Jesus, our first thought may be, “God, where were You? They didn’t deserve that!”

Of course, we know the end of the story in each case:

  • Job lost all he had. He didn’t understand his circumstances, yet he worshipped God and said, “Though He slay me, yet will I trust Him” (Job 13:15). In the end, Job’s blessings were restored.
  • Joseph was sold into slavery by his own family, lied about, thrown into prison even though innocent, and he was forgotten by a friend. Yet through it all, he trusted God; ultimately, he was used of God to save millions during a great famine.
  • Jesus was holy and without sin, yet He was forsaken, beaten, and nailed to a cross to die a criminal's death. Although Jesus was God’s Son, He still had to choose to trust, “Father…not My will, but Yours, be done” (Luke 22:42). The end result: He bought salvation for the whole world by enduring the cross.

Trust God’s Sovereignty

We don’t know how the story of our suffering will bring good. We must choose to trust God even in the darkness. God is in complete control and He is eternal. Since He is not bound by time, He can see the whole picture all at once. His Word tells us He doesn’t think the way we do. “For My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways My ways, says the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts” (Isaiah 55:8-9).

We may not see now, or even before we die, what God is doing in and through our most difficult circumstances, but we can be certain He is working all things for good, according to His will, and we can certainly trust God when bad things happen.