God, Suffering, and Post-Traumatic Growth

Some people believe that God grants Christians a carefree life, and that if God doesn’t grant us this, we must be weak of faith and/or God must be angry. We hold God responsible for all our suffering. This is kind of weird, since we do not do so for our happiness – we may thank God, but we still reecognize the part we ourselves and other people have had in it.

Also, it is common for some Christians to assume that God only allows suffering for the weak of faith. In other words, it must be our own fault of we suffer. This again is discounting the role humanity and circumstances have in people’s suffering. Then, of course, we may be angry with God and lose our faith. After all, if He eexists, why does He allow humans and nature to cause people suffeirng?

I want to talk here about growing from suffering. There is such a thing in psychology as post-traumatic growth, and I believe it is important that we recognize this in order to accept our suffering. Beyond being angry because we suffer – which of course is a stage of grief too -, can we try to use our tribulations as an opportunity to learn? For example, many people who have suffered a lot, learn to appreciate the little things in life. I am not saying that we need to be thankful that we endured whatever we endured, but we can use it as a springboard to growth. Let’s move beyond blaming ourselves or God and onto accepting whatever life throws at us and appreciating it as much as possible. Non-Christians can perhaps more easily acknowledge that God is not to blame for our suffering – simply because they may not believe in God -, but then again believers may find themselves spiritually growing from our experiences. I became a believer when I was in pretty dire circumstances, and I am not the only one.

4 thoughts on “God, Suffering, and Post-Traumatic Growth

  1. I always believe that God lets something happened because He is teaching us a lesson. A lesson that we will surely understand based on our experience. I wouldn’t actually call it a suffering but rather a life changing challenge that I wouldn’t mind taking.

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  2. I sincerely believe that everything happens for a reason. Those sufferings as you put it means we have something more to learn cos we grow as we journey through life. I also believe that some things happen because it’s part of a much bigger picture. God is always good.

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  3. I have faith in God and whenever I have ups and downs, I always ask for God’s guidance and give thanks to everything good that happened to me. but I always believe that though it may sometimes seems as if life is decided for us, remember that in all actions before this, you made the choices which brought you in that situation. You alone decide where to go next. There is always a choice.

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  4. Everyone have been through a lot in their respective lives. For the things that had happened in my life, especially the bad ones, I never doubted nor questioned or blamed Him. I know he has planned something better for me besides, he’s the author of my life, our lives. šŸ™‚ I’ve always had my faith in him.

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