Seeing With a Blind Eye

A friend finds you at Church, and pulls you into a quiet hallway. His eyes are red, wet with tears. He recently lost his spouse. Now he tries to make sense of the tragedy and looks to you as a confidant and advisor. “How,” he asks, “could this happen to me? How could God do this to me?”

How do you reply?

Putting aside the matter of consoling your friend — he is looking for an answer, not consolation — there are lots of possible responses. Some are more common tropes than others. Consider:

1. “God called her home. It was her time.”
2. “It was the act of an evil man, and God was not involved at all.”
3. “It is all part of God’s plan.”
4. “There is no way for us to know.”
5. “Probably because of something you did. Or she did.”

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