God's will is wholly good

An understanding that God is good and causes only good can open the way to healing.

My husband and I enjoyed watching L. M. Montgomery's classic, Anne of Green Gables, and its sequel, Anne of Avonlea, on television recently. It's a delightful story about a free-spirited young orphan named Anne. Concerned about Anne's lack of piety, Marilla, her foster parent, tries to instill in her a healthy respect for the Almighty. Marilla's comments about God's willingness to let loved ones die, though, gave me pause for thought.

When Anne's childhood friend Gilbert struggles to overcome scarlet fever, Marilla tells Anne she can be certain he will recover only "if God wills it." She adds, "What God determines cannot be changed."

If a loved one falls ill and dies, is God responsible? Does He intend for us to suffer? If not, must we conclude that God is essentially powerless to do anything about sickness and disease?

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July 8, 1991

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