John Ortberg says that we all have questions we’d like to ask Jesus such as, “Why does this little boy have a brain tumor? Hey Jesus, why do hungry children keep dying and wars keep breaking out? Hey Jesus, why did my child run away? Why did my marriage fall apart? Why did my father suffer from crippling depression” (pg. 114-115)?
I remember when I was 11 years old and being bullied at my school. The girls on the bus would make fun of my clothes and hair. One night when my grandma was babysitting me, I began to cry. She asked me a question…”what is wrong?” I followed up with my own set of questions. Why are the girls at school so mean to me? Why is middle school so hard? My grandma hugged me and told me she loved me and that things would get better.
Later on in my life, I remember showing up to youth group one Sunday morning with quite a hangover from partying the night before. Guess what? Instead of inquisitive minds wanting to know, no questions were asked. Not one. I remember wishing that someone would ask me, “Why are you partying? Why do you feel the need to do what you are doing? Do you know that you are loved? But, nothing happened. I wonder what might have been different for me if someone had asked some questions. What if I had asked for help from my youth group leader or a caring adult at church? Asking questions might have changed the trajectory I traveled during my high school years.
As we work with children and the people who surround us on a daily basis, let’s remember to ask questions. Let’s ask kids how they are doing and really listen. Let’s also remember to go to God with our own tough questions and let Him hold us and tell us it will be okay.
Ortberg goes on to say that Jesus will come back and when He does, He will set things right. In fact, Jesus says, “In that day, you will no longer ask me anything” (pg. 115). I bet that will be a relief to Jesus! 🙂 For now, may we continue to ask Jesus and each other our heart-felt questions and may we have faith to follow Him to the end when “we will see the goodness of God. The world will be re-born. Pain will be defeated. There will be no more questions” (pg. 115).