This might come about if they want something badly, but you know it isn’t good for them and so refuse their request. Of course, a child may pitch a fit, cry, stomp, scream that you are being unreasonable. He or she might even say you don’t love them–because if you did, you’d give them what they want.
But there are situations when we know what a child does not know. We are experienced enough to see that a certain thing or situation will harm them. And it’s precisely because we Do love them that we refuse–even when we know that our refusal will cause them pain.
As Christians who pray, we adults do not always receive what we pray for. How do we handle it? Do we pitch a fit, cry, stomp, scream that God is being unreasonable. Do we lose faith that He loves us? Sometimes we do.
Maybe we’ve lost someone dear to us, or are fired from a job. or maybe a huge tragedy out of our control comes upon us as a people–hurricanes, earthquakes, floods, and war? It would seem, then, that God is forcing us to our knees.
Can we believe that all this comes from a God who loves us as a parent?
The answer is difficult. Just as a child questions her parent’s reasoning, we question God’s reasoning. OR at the very least, we wonder about God’s intent. A wonderful priest I know wouldn’t venture an answer as to why awful things happen to people. “If you want to know why human beings suffer, don’t ask me–ask God,” he said.
So the question goes unanswered because for a human being to know the reasoning of God can be compared to a grasshopper attempting to know the reasoning of a human being. It cannot be done. Yet what we often see happening is that uncontrollable tragedies, like those mentioned above, have an ability to pull people together. People stand together, and pray together, in the face of great disasters.
So, in situations of suffering when it seems God has brought us to our knees, what should we do? I think we trust that God loves us as a parent, and that because of that great love, He will give us what we need to get through, to get up, and even to become better people.