Please do not take this the wrong way...... would you question god's will, if a close family member suffered or died at a very young age?
I know that it is labled "life" and many people have suffered through that already.
I ask because I would lose it if something happened to my 5 year old nephew. After going to my grandfather's funeral recently, I could not imagine looking at a young child in a coffin.
That would shake anyone's faith.
Death will shake anyone regardless of faith, but death can absolutely test faith. If I lost my daughter I would be devastated and would grieve and grieve and grieve.
Would I lose my faith? No, I know the risen Lord Jesus!! Can I say that with certainty? Yes sir. Would I grieve for a long period and miss her for the rest of my life? Absolutely, no doubt in my mind.
I've seen my best friend deny God because of the loss of his grandmother (who served as his mother for most of his youth). I've seen families torn apart because of the loss of loved ones. I've seen men and women of God leave their faith behind when death comes in their lives. My grandmother lost my grandfather 21 years ago and to this day she talks about him and misses him dearly every single day and questions why God took him like he did.
I've also seen the best come out of folks in moments of utter despair.
I watched my sister tragically lose her fiance 4 years ago. Great guy....strong, fit, growing career and then one evening on a stair climber at the gym his heart stopped and he died almost instantly. It was later discovered he had an undiagnosed heart condition since birth (doctors believe) and the Lord took him home. My sister was obliterated, but she grew in her faith because of it....she actually drew closer to God in the process. Since that time she's undertaken a number of charitable events in his name and keeps contact with his family. She’s witnessed to members of my family and others and has become a strong, strong woman because of the loss. Just two weeks ago she announced her engagement to a new man in her life.....another terrific man. It's a blessing seeing all my sisters married to good men that love them and their families. My sister will always remember the man she lost tragically and we won't know exactly why the Lord called him home like he did, but I can say that he's now with his Lord and savior and his memory and my sister's testimony has touched so many over the last 4 years.
Another story (and I've shared this before) involves a coworker of my wife....awesome story!! My wife's coworker lost her baby granddaughter tragically in an accident caused by her son (the child's uncle). The child's mother was devastated as was her brother who was responsible for the accident, but in a moment of sheer grace and love the mother completely forgave her brother. While on their knees, within a private moment of utter grace and despair and forgiveness, my wife's coworker snapped a picture of the two of them on their knees in an embrace in the child's room. At the child's funeral the child's estranged biker father came with his entire biker gang with the intent of killing his brother in law because of the death of his daughter. At the funeral service the mother shared Christ with the crowd and the forgiveness and love she had for her brother. They showed a slide show of the life of the young child that was taken and the precious image capture by their mother (my wife’s coworker) on their knees in the child's room. That day the entire biker gang dedicated their lives to Christ and forgave the lost child’s uncle.
Sometimes the evil we perceive in our lives, when put in the hands of God, can change lives in powerful positive ways we'd never expect.
We tend to focus on the darkness and negativity of each moment, but we rarely take the time to revisit the situation years later or chronicle the aftermath.....we miss the potential and the reality of so much goodness that often arises out of tragedy. I don’t enjoy being put to the fire, but I can assure you that Jesus Christ is best way through it!