Simple: So people can grow closer to Him. A common misconception people have is that everyone is completely the same and starts with the same set of cards in life. People say for God to be fair and good he can't create people with disabilities and problems. Yes, God is fair, however "Justice is not a thing of the time. Though the mills of God grind slowly, they grind to perfection. Life itself metes out justice. The justice of God adjusts the injustice of men" - Jesus.

I think this misconception happens because people never think about this topic fully and objectively. While yes, people are equal in the sense that everyone should be treated with respect and proper courtesy, they are not equal in the sense that they should all live the same life as somebody else.

Everybody has their unique strengths and weaknesses

Everybody is born into this world with their own strengths and weaknesses. Everybody is different and have their own difficulties and problems to overcome as well as their own strengths to let shine.

Everyone does not get the same fair chance at life. Why is this such a hard thing to understand and such a problem? Life would be terrible if everybody started with the exact same parameters. It would not be dynamic and would lack growth, challenges and purpose. The purposeful world, however, is completely diverse and allows for growth in a number of different areas. Somebody born blind has their own set of difficulties to overcome while somebody born with AIDS has their own challenges.

Everything exists in degrees

I see this as something to consider in terms of degrees. You would not really see a problem if somebody was genetically born to be a bit more overweight than somebody else. You would say, eh that sucks for them but it's not really that big of a deal, at least compared to somebody being born blind." Why is that? The are both just something that somebody has to overcome, but it is because of the degree of one being much harder than the other one that it now becomes a tragedy and unfair.

People should approach adversity and suffering head on as this is a chance for growth and self mastery. How do you know good without bad? How do you know light without darkness? It is through this contrast of adversity that we can become closer to God and achieve a mastery as perfect as His.

Conclusion

I am sure a number of people will fight me on this and that is totally fine. Again, I welcome adversity head on as it will only strengthen me and my relationship with God. Through every hardship comes a new strength and for every bit of darkness lies a hint of light.

So go out and be thankful for everything you have and look forward to taking on the troubles of the world as they will provide growth and development for your Spirit. After all, this is not your only life!

 Filed under: Spiritual, God

About The Author

Quinton Figueroa

Quinton Figueroa

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El Paso, Texas

I am an entrepreneur at heart. Throughout my whole life I have enjoyed building real businesses by solving real problems. Business is life itself. My goal with businesses is to help move the human ...

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23 Comments

Anonymous: laudable attitude, but completely missing the point

"I welcome adversity head on as it will only strengthen me and my relationship with God"

Good for you.

So, a just and holy God has nothing better to do than to constantly test and tempt you, so you can grow stronger and closer to Him? Er, that doesn't sound right. Isn't it...Satan? And isn't your own reaction to the testing and tempting and tribulation what drives your soul one way or another?

Your argument is fatuously simple-minded. I'm sure God is happy you're closer to Him every time you overcome this or that, but I bet it chafes His righteousness every time you attribute your suffering to Him -- either directly as a causal factor, or indirectly because He couldn't be bothered to roust Himself to head off trouble. Or worst -- because the end result, He knows, is beneficial to Him: you grow closer to Him whenever He lets you be harmed or hurt, so it's cynically in His best interests to let you take a hit or two every now and again.

Madness! Heresy! On God's behalf, and to defend His honor, I call this idea what it is: Utterly false, and an affront to God's holy character!

God hates all harm, and while He has been forced to dish out some powerful hurt from time to time, His wrath and anger have always been directed at the apostate, NEVER His children.

An analogy serves here: Our lives are high-stakes poker, and we are the chips. God is playing against the Devil, but God's the dealer, and can choose His own deck. The Devil tries to cheat too, and when you factor in the reality that the chips themselves (that's us, you dolt) can participate in the game (by allowing themselves to be captured by Satan), things get complicated. Ultimately, once the game is over, and the chips get 'cashed', the table will be cleared and we'll get to do something else. Satan will incarcerated. Until then, God will play by the rules of the game, and even though the last hand hasn't been dealt yet, He's already won the game with a brilliant sacrifice made 2000 years ago on a hill just outside of Jerusalem.

God lets bad things happen because sometimes, playing by the rules means He can't intervene, and He won't cheat. But once the game is over, He WILL make it right. He'll remember, and reward the long suffering and faithfulness of those who, in His name, endured.

THAT's why bad things happen to good people sometimes, and when it's all said and done, those bad things will be made right. Maybe not in this life, but eventually. Anything less makes God a liar, or a coward. You wanna tell Him that?

Didn't think so...

Quinton Figueroa: Firth of all, thank you very
@Anonymous (view comment)

Firth of all, thank you very much for the reply. I totally appreciate and respect your opinion. Here are my thoughts on what you had to say:

Yes, our testing is caused by Satan who God allows. If He did not want us to be tested Satan would be destroyed and we would not be here on Earth.

So if I follow you correctly you are saying that every time we sin it hurts Him. I would agree with this, but I think this lacks depth.

Let me put it this way. A father may be hurt and feel bad when his child is misdirected and goes the wrong way, but it is needed for the child's growth and development just as it was needed for the father. And are we not God's children? How do we come to perfection except through disappointing Him? You were not born perfect therefore He created you knowing there was going to be disappointment did He not?

If God hates all harm why were we created and why is Satan still allowed to tempt us?

As far as your poker analogy, it makes sense and I would agree with you. But I don't see how this refutes what I am saying.

Thanks again for your response!

Nathan: Wrong

You're completely off track and that belief takes an extreme amount of ignorance.
First of all in the bible it says that God created us in the womb of our mothers.
So God then would be purposefully creating us that way so we're born with a disability.
And I'm not just talking about your ignorant rubbish that people in the bible were created blind or def..
I'm talking about disabilities that completely destroy a persons chance at a normal life. How is "Gods holy amazing perfect works" demonstrated when people need to be hooked up to machines and put into chairs that their carer's have to manually push them around in because that disabled persons brain cannot function properly to even perform a simple task of moving a joystick to move the chair around? Because they're BORN with physical deformities and brain damage.
Also here is one for you.
God so loving said 'Ye, let there be children who are born with extreme pain and develop cancer so that they may die at a ridiculously young age' and so it was. God loves watching people die. Such a loving and caring father. So much so that even after all of that, if you don't believe in his sorry ass, you will be tormented for the rest of eternity.
Where does the love show in that?
Your level of ignorance is at an all time high.
Good luck with your existence.

j.randomizer: You still run into the problem of evil...

Wow. Here's a question for you...

Would you vote for a president that openly admits to kicking puppies?

No, you wouldn't. Now ask yourself why. It's because puppies are innocent and do not deserve to be hurt, in any way shape or form.

Now, replace the following words

Vote For > Worship (that's what you're doing, in choosing say, a judeo-christian god, instead of say, the hindu pantheon, voting for god)

President > god

Kicking > deforming

Puppies > babies.

Our new sentence reads

Would you worship a god that openly admits to deforming babies?

Of course not! No rational person would. Babies are innocent, and causing them harm is immoral, totally and completely, it is also unforgivable.

It does not matter that it may be 'part of god's plan'. Hurting the innocent is unforgivably evil. Further, most people ascribe to god the powers of omniscience and omnipotence. It is inconceivable that an omniscient and omnipotent being could FAIL to come up with a course of action that fulfills it's plan while keeping the innocent and blameless from harm. To do otherwise is pure, unadulterated evil.

A simpler solution is that gods simply do not exist. When you accept this simple fact, the 'problem' of evil gods disappears completely.

Quinton Figueroa: You have quite an
@j.randomizer (view comment)

You have quite an interesting analogy and I definitely follow it, but I don't agree with it.

First of all, yes I would vote for a president that kicks puppies if he cleaned up this country with the vision and integrity our founding fathers had. Kicking puppies is a small price to pay for a nation honestly run under God, morals and discipline.

To me it sounds like if somebody does one thing wrong they are now an evil person. This is hardly the case. People mess up all the time and this does not make them 100% wrong on everything else. Some of the best musical composers are gay. Does them being gay mean that their music is no longer good? Of course not! The fact that they are gay has nothing to do with the music being produced (at least to a degree), just how a president kicking puppies has nothing to do with not being able to lead a country, to a degree.

You asked me: Would you worship a god that openly admits to deforming babies?

My answer is clearly yes. If I can understand why something is it does not make it a problem at all. I think you are thinking too earthly and lifelike and not looking at the big picture. Perhaps the baby was an evil spirit in a past world, perhaps this is his own Hell and separation of God that he has to overcome in this life. There could be a number of reasons on why this is and if you understand the why it still keeps God perfectly fair and just. Once again, "Justice is not a thing of the time. Though the mills of God grind slowly, they grind to perfection. Life itself metes out justice."

I don't want a simple solution, that is what everyone in America wants. I want the TRUTHFUL, HONEST and CORRECT solution, and I will search my ass off for it.

j.randomizer: Good thoughts.

Very interesting. I can completely see where you're coming from.

I'd like to invite you into a thought experiment.

Among others, God has the following qualities:
God is omnipotent - He can do anything, anything at all.
God is all-loving - He is goodness defined.
God is also supernatural, meaning He exists outside the natural order of things. This means that He doesn't have to play by our rules.

Would you agree that these things are part of what define God?

So, why can't God come up with a way to achieve his goal that doesn't involve human suffering? He's omnipotent and not bound by natural law.

This leads us to the following conclusions:

Evil exists, but God chooses to do nothing. If that is the case, then God Himself is evil and isn't worthy of our worship.

Evil exists, but God cannot do anything about it. If this is the case, then God is not omnipotent and likewise isn't worthy of our worship.

Evil exists, and God is able and willing to do something about it. Well then, why hasn't he stopped the suffering of countless millions? By our previous definitions, this cannot be God.

Evil exists, and God is neither able nor willing to do something. Why call Him God at all?

Remember, God is not bound by our laws, He is omnipotent and omnibenevolent. That we mere mortals cannot conceive of just how God's plan would work without the existence of evil is immaterial (you yourself make the point that God's plan for us is unknowable). The fact is that to an omnipotent, supernatural being, such a plan is an available course of action because otherwise this being is not worthy of our praise.

THAT is the Problem of Evil and it is insurmountable with the generally applied qualities associated with God.

The problem goes away if you don't consider God to be Omnibenevolent, or if you don't consider God to be Omnipotent, but again, if that is the case, is He deserving of our worship?

Just pointing out the seriousness of your question, not trying to convert you to or from anything. Look up Epicurus (a Greek philosopher) for more information on the Problem of Evil.

Quinton Figueroa: This is a really great point
@j.randomizer (view comment)

This is a really great point you pose.

Yes, I would agree with all those qualities you defined of God.

So, why can't God come up with a way to achieve his goal that doesn't involve human suffering? He's omnipotent and not bound by natural law.

I have not fully formed my own perspective on this yet and would like to research it more and get back to you, however I really do like what Channing said about this here: http://www.slayerment.com/blog/why-are-people-born-disabilities-and-why-...

Evil exists, but God chooses to do nothing. If that is the case, then God Himself is evil and isn't worthy of our worship.

I don't think that's necessarily true. God could do nothing about evil and still be NOT evil just as a father could watch his child fall victim to evil knowing it will strengthen him. Over the short term it may create the illusion of being evil, but in the long run it would not seem as though it is. This seems essential to growth, at least in this life under these laws of physics.

Evil exists, but God cannot do anything about it. If this is the case, then God is not omnipotent and likewise isn't worthy of our worship.

That makes sense and I'd agree.

Evil exists, and God is able and willing to do something about it. Well then, why hasn't he stopped the suffering of countless millions? By our previous definitions, this cannot be God.

I really don't think God sees the suffering as a terrible thing. I think he sees it as a natural teacher or consequence to choices a spirit has made. This sort of leads us back to your original question, and I think Channing has a pretty solid explanation for that.

Evil exists, and God is neither able nor willing to do something. Why call Him God at all?

Agreed.

you yourself make the point that God's plan for us is unknowable

Do I? If you could show me where I would be appreciative because I actually do not think I hold that belief. I think he does have a plan for us, although I think without one God could still be worthy of praise.

I really appreciate your post, it has some great points and really has me thinking. I am going to look into Epicurus and see what I can find about this. This is some really cool stuff.

Thanks!

j.randomizer: Your heart's in the right place.

I did read Channing's post, and I have some logical issues with it. It's a decent rationalization but I'm not able to quite understand what he/she (sorry, Channing is an androgynous name) is saying. I certainly cannot agree to be bound by a contract that I have no possibility of ever having been aware of making. The two positions taken together are fine, but the first one is not something I would ever enforce on an innocent human life.

In regards to your statement
This seems essential to growth, at least in this life under these laws of physics.

I have no argument that adversity contributes to growth, but why doesn't God create a universe who's laws of physics allow for growth without adversity? He can, he's omnipotent. Especially when said 'adversity' comes in the form of harm to the innocent. What have we, as a species done to deserve having parents being forced to watch their children die to diseases that God created? What have we done to deserve losing a loved-one to a tornado? What did a boy in Bosnia do to deserve having his legs blown off by a landmine? These are horrible, horrible acts and betray the presence of evil when they must be attributed to some higher being.

The only way I see to rationalize such a thing would be with the concept of Original Sin, and that has some very serious moral implications when thinking about God.

I'd just like to thank you for allowing me to have such a good time on your blog. I appreciate your willingness to entertain opposing viewpoints. Thanks!

Quinton Figueroa: Another great post
@j.randomizer (view comment)

Okay, I have done some thinking and here is my response:

But why doesn't God create a universe who's laws of physics allow for growth without adversity?

This really is a good question. And I don't want to try to force an answer because I totally see what you're saying and would like to hit it with some possibilities.

It seems a logical answer would be that we are indeed a fallen generation. From my understanding of the Bible and spiritual things, we once were with God and close to Him. We served under his realm and there was not suffering, at least not in the way that there is here on earth now (I haven't looked into this enough to strictly say there was no suffering, however it has been promised in the Bible that Satan will be destroyed - take that how you want. I see it as there being less evil, possibly no evil, which illustrates degrees of good and evil). I think what happened is we messed up in our higher nature and are now back here working our way back up. It seems as though it would not have been possible for us to mess up without some type of evil in a higher dimension. Because of this it almost seems as though it is an eternal truth that there is always evil we will overcome, unless of course we become 100% good and that of God, which opens up a whole new line of questions.

Additionally, I don't see suffering as a bad thing at all. I mean it is but it isn't. Here's how I currently view the big picture: God is 100% truth and good. As soon as you start getting away from God you now display only a percentage of truth, say 50%. This other absence of truth is strictly the absence of good. Evil is a bi-product of the absence of good and is not created, at least it doesn't seem as though it is. Just like darkness is the absence of light. Did God create darkness? To me, this is like saying, why doesn't God rid the world of darkness? If he did we would be living in eternal light, we would be in a sense God. This world is clearly created purposefully and this absence creates an empty hole that we strive to fill. If it was filled, we would not be here nor need to strive for it. We wouldn't have suffering. If we were 100% good we wouldn't have evil. And if we didn't need to progress we would be 100% good. But since we will always have some degree of progression (at least in some sense it seems - highly speculative) there will always be these absences. It seems the only way to truly rid this is by being in eternal light and eternal good - God.

So why aren't we God? This leads me to free will being a possible answer. He can rid the world of evil, but can we is the question. We are the one's that create it due to our failure and absence of good. We keep messing up. If he were to take out this contrast I don't think we would have free will at that point. I guess this is also saying God has no free will, and I am not 100% sure of that, but I don't see how it really creates any pertinent issues. Good, light and truth do not operation based off decision. They do not change, just as our God does not change.

This is actually an interesting conclusion I just reached and I really need to think about it more, but would appreciate your feedback as well. It seems like I am really getting out there, but it all makes some sense to me, just not crystal clear.

BTW, I did some research on Epicurus and found him very fascinating - a very smart guy, especially for his time.

Thomas: You see these
@j.randomizer (view comment)

You see these "imperfections" in others and think they are flaws in God's works. Souly because they are not design to your set of standards that please you. They are not the way you'd like them to be, or how you would of done it if you were the one creating these babies. So with your limited insight, you stand up and proclaim that these "imperfections" are simply mistake in what is supposed to be a perfect God's design.

God has a plan for you and your life. I believe he creates you to achieve just that. So if your are blind, or enable to walk, or you may have "lost" an ability that others have. I know you've gained guidance in what God has in store for you.

j.randomizer: The way I see things.
@Thomas (view comment)

"You see these "imperfections" in others and think they are flaws in God's works."

You are absolutely correct. And here's why. God is omnipotent. God is supernatural. Therefore, God can devise a method that enacts His plan that does not involve the suffering of the innocent. Assuming God exists, this means that God is malignant and is not worthy of our praise, let alone worship.

That innocent people are caused harm is inexcusably evil when you are dealing with an omnipotent, supernatural being. It really is as simple as that. If God exists, I would refuse to worship him on those grounds alone. They are a necessary and sufficient reason to reject the worship of such a being.

Why? Because I hold God to the same standards that I hold myself to. That's not Hubris, that's simple expectation of Leadership by Example. If I were to allow the suffering of the innocent when I had the power to do something about it, then I would be in a morally untenable position. I would, in fact, be evil. It is completely irrelevant that God is somehow 'beyond' us. Right now, there is a baby being born with a horrific genetic disorder that will cause her grief for the rest of her life. She has done absolutely nothing to deserve such a horrible sentence. Nothing at all. Were I omnipotent, I would be under a moral obligation to do something about that.

Bad enough that we just consider that she's the victim of random chance, but God chooses to do nothing about it. Worse is the idea that 'it is part of God's Plan for her.' Think about that. God actively hurt an innocent child. His intent was to cause her harm, difficulty and suffering, when she obviously did nothing to deserve such a horrific fate. That's not just wrong, it's repellent, yet somehow, you want to forgive God for that. I honestly don't understand.

Anonymous: There's no fairness/justice in our evil actions.
@j.randomizer (view comment)

Sure it's easier to point the finger at God, but there are things we know that causes birth defects. Say parents running around shooting up crack, smoking pot, or exposing themselves to other inauspicious conditions, before/during pregnancies. That's their own free will, and maybe you're thinking, 'What is God doing to stop all this?' God isn't going to stop anyone, or take away there own free-will. But God has given us guidance that if we abide by we wouldn't see others rapping, murdering, or desecrate their bodies. You have to admit we choose to do these evils, but we can't take accountability for the outcome of the situation. So we blame God, it's nothing new. Man blamed the very first sin on God, just as you're doing here. When God came to Adam and said, "Adam, I told you not to eat from the tree." Adam replied with, "It wasn't that of my ideas, but the women WHO YOU GAVE ME." Adam pointed the finger at God for giving him this women, who turned him to sin. Yet, it was Adams free will, that he willing choose to sin, that led him astray.
Sin and evil are not fair, and man is sinful, and it's that evil that makes others suffer. Case-in-point, when the sexual evil desires of a man overwhelms his righteous-thinking and rapes someone, that evil makes others suffer as well. You're probably thinking thats just not fair, she didn't do anything wrong. But why are you looking for fairness and justice in evil?

Channing: The question boils down to:

The question boils down to: why does God allow any form of suffering to exist at all?

1.) First of all, as spirits we chose to enter this life aware of what risks and challenges there would be.

2.) Suffering (or pain, or evil), both that of others as well as our own, exists as a challenge or reminder for us to grow towards God when everything else fails. A simple analogy is that of a child touching a hot stove. Some children will listen to their parent's warning not to touch the hot stove but most need to experience the pain themselves in order to learn that lesson.

Certainly God could just make us the perfect being right away without having experienced evil or suffering, but would we then really be an individual being in our own right? I think God wants us to be individual beings who have consciously chosen to be who we are, and to be able to do so we have to be given the chance to grow and experience things freely, even suffering and evil. Probably we as humans on this planet are exaggerating our experience in evil, but that is our free choice.

Quinton Figueroa: Wow, very well said. This is
@Channing (view comment)

Wow, very well said. This is some really good stuff you said right here and it makes perfect sense. You should write a blog on this site or something because you really have some solid knowledge to share :). I really like this!

Anonymous: As spirits we chose to enter
@Channing (view comment)

As spirits we chose to enter this life? That's not at all true. I never asked to be born. Life was thrust upon me.

Little Kitten: Is God fair?

I'm born with asperger which is a mild form of autism. I never knew about it until just a year ago. I'm already 52. Imagine, all my life of misery and loneliness without knowing why. I go to church but have hardly any friends at all, except a compassionate and wonderful wife. Question is, why God let me suffer like this lonely life while seeing other people enjoying their life with friends. You may say God has a reason for everything but unless and until you are in the disabled person's shoes, you will never be able to know how exactly we feel.

Anonymous: wittness trying to speak for the lover
@Little Kitten (view comment)

You write clearly and very well, I know many engineers that are not a proficient.
Many people normal people including myself feel socially akward and feel lonely and miserable once in a while. Spergen (aka the prince of preachers) was an increadably gifted paster, preacher, and speaker. He intesly struggled with lonelyness and depression.
You have been given a wonderful wife, and God promises to be faithful, and is known as the conforter. He promises to live inside you.
You also are able to simpithise with other people and in doing so you can see the other people sitting alone in church and sit by them. You are able to better see the need because you are not wrapped up in your own circle of friends.

Craig: Deformity and crippling illness

I saw a man today. He had shrunken tiny legs and his back was twisted and bent forward. It was so horrible. He was contorted in a wheel chair. My question is - what purpose could this serve? I am healthy and strong - why put him through this "purpose" and not others like myself? If some people have to sffer greatly, and others do not, then it seems that God has different "purposes" for different people.

I does not make sense.

Mary Stoecklin: your incredible website

I wish I'd read all of the postings about 30 years ago! You've shown me a new way of thinking about my congenital disability -- the religious I've met through my youth have always told me ALL disabled people are 'shard of God' and 'worthless' I've wasted time hating God for having the audacity of considering me a worthless shard -- no more, thanks to you and all who posted.

Jay: I wanted to why my life was hard.

I wanted to why my life was so, so, hard. I born disabled I have 5 disabilitys that control my life and my father would beet me every day of my life when I was a kid. I did not know how I was even still alive today but this answers it all. This has brought me so close to God that the only thing I do in my life is love God and worship God!!

Thank you and God bless you!!

Tabi Heedley: Teaches to lean on God for strength, be good example to others..

My life as a child was a roller coaster and I felt there was no purpose for my life. I was suicidal, a runaway, isolative and many bad things in life happened. Then I had a terrible car accident with a traumatic brain injury. I was in coma for 16 days, my heart stopped twice, had 2 fractured arms and 2 fractured legs (nothing broke), had internal bleeding, feeding tube, tube in head, rod in shoulder, peti-mal seizures and short term memory. A lot of things but I knew to lean on God for strength and I learned a lot from this accident too. That I do have purposes of being here even though there's so many trials, to thank God for all things. He knows all reasons for things and knows what's best to help us learn and best ways to use us, We just need faith in Him and know there's good out of all bad things. Then I get M.S. in '08 that knocked me down spiritually for 4 months. Then I reminded myself the serenity prayer. God grant me to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference. I then accepted it and that helped tremendously to lean on Him still. Then my son gets leukemia Oct. 18th, 2010 (when he was 3 yrs. old) and remission in Dec. 2010. He still had chemo for 3 yrs. that was a big battle itself and life threatening at times. Chemo ended Dec. 29th 2013. 2 yr. anniversary for that yesterday. This had a total flip on my husband (his father) and I. We grew so much closer from all this through the years and again I thank God even though there was so much suffering. Jesus suffered more than any of us though. Praise God we've survived. Him and I are serving the Lord with music. Not of our good works, but His. So don't think I'm bragging. I'm just bragging of what God has done which is so so wonderful. We should thank the Lord each day for waking up, all our blessings, even the ones we don't realize. Be thankful for all things. God bless.

Prafull Kothari: Article was good but lacked the right direction

U said that disabilties are given only to grow closer to God but this very idea of yours contradicts the idea that Humans are provided free will by God to either worship him or not..but if He has only provided disabilties than he is compelling SOME to worship him or in your words grow closer to him.Why would he do that? Actually the right reason for sufferings is Karma(deeds)

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