Monday, January 18, 2010

Dealing with Death

As a follow up to the last post, below are two excerpts from When Bad Things Happen to Good People by (Harold Kushner) that help me grapple with premature deaths:

"If the bad things that happen to us are the results of bad luck, and not the will of God, what makes bad luck happen?" I was stumped for an answer. My instinctive response was that nothing makes bad luck happen; it just happens. But I suspected that there must be more to it than that... Can you accept the idea that some things happen for no reason, that there is randomness in the universe? Some people cannot handle that idea. They look for connections, striving desperately to make sense of all that happens. They convince themselves that God is cruel, or that they are sinners, rather than accept randomness. Sometimes, when they have made sense of ninety percent of everything they know, they let themselves assume that the other ten percent makes sense also, but lies beyond the reach of their understanding. But why do we have to insist on everything being reasonable? (pg. 46)...

Laws of nature do not make exceptions for nice people. A bullet has no conscience; neither does a malignant tumor or an automobile gone out of control. That is why good people get sick and get hurt as much as anyone. No matter what stories we were taught about Daniel or Jonah in Sunday School, God does not reach down to interrupt the workings of laws of nature to protect the righteous from harm. (pg. 58)

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