Friday, September 9, 2016


After the terrorist attack of September 11, 2001, Robert Schuller, pastor at the Crystal Cathedral in southern California, wrote a newspaper column. There, he said, "Why do bad things happen to good people? That's the wrong question. . . the right question is: What happens to good people when bad things happen to them? We know the answer to that question: They always become better people. Tragedy never leaves us where it finds us."

I agree with Schuller that, "Tragedy never leaves us where it finds us." But in my experience, as a bereaved parent who lost a son and as a minister to those who have experienced tragedies of their own, people don't "always become better people". Some people become bitter. Some marriages break up. Some lives are shattered.

What is the difference? In my estimation it is choice. Am I going to choose to come out of this better by trusting in God's sovereignty, power and love? Or am I going to come out of this bitter by blaming God, my spouse and whatever or whoever caused the tragedy?

I choose better over bitter. I choose life over death. I choose hope over despair. I choose love over hate. I choose Jesus.

-- Rev. David T. Wilkinson


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