There is no easy answer.
It’s not for us to know how God will work with such suffering. It’s only for us to know that God — the Father of all mercies — desires to pour out his abundant life on us at all times. As Jesus tells us, “Blessed are those who mourn,” for God himself will wipe away our every tear. And not only in heaven but even in this life he will comfort us in our weeping and allow such suffering to spring forth in a deeper way of living.
Although we may bear wounds that don’t fully heal in this life, God will use those wounds to do wonderful and miraculous things — stretching our hearts to be more like his.
As I think of my parents’ friends, I can only take solace in knowing that Jesus weeps with them as he did for Lazarus. Though they mourn now, one day they will know the healing love of God as he gazes on them, wipes away their tears and carries them to the place he has prepared for them from all eternity.
Chris Hazellis the founder of The Call Collective, a blog exploring the intersection between faith, culture and creativity. He also writes regularly for Word on Fire.