Why does God put obstacles (sickness, persecution, financial difficulty, relational struggles) in our lives? Some people think obstacles occur because God is not powerful enough or good enough to prevent them. But the Bible repeatedly teaches that God's power is unlimited and His goodness is perfect. So why do the obstacles keep coming?
This past Sunday the pastor of our church, John Fender, preached a very clear and encouraging sermon on this subject based on Hebrews 11:23-31. In his sermon, he suggests that God puts these obstacles in our lives to strengthen "the flabby muscles of our faith." As hard as it is to admit it, we need these obstacles to reveal the weak areas of our faith and to strengthen our confidence in God alone.
For obvious reasons, this sermon was a great reminder that Erin's cancer is not outside of God's control and should not cause us to question God's goodness. Beyond the medical explanations, we know that God is ultimately in control of all things and in His perfect wisdom He has allowed this obstacle to come into her life as an opportunity for her faith to be strengthened and, Lord willing, for the faith of many others to be strengthened as well. That reality doesn't mean the day-to-day struggles of chemotherapy and surgery are fun or easy. But it does mean those struggles are not purposeless. They are all a part of God's work in our lives to draw us ever closer to Him by faith.
You can watch a video of the sermon below.