But let’s focus for the moment on one answer in particular: God allows some people to suffer in order to get their attention, especially if they are unbelievers in fact or in effect.
That’s what He did with me, back when I was an atheist. He broke my heart, and the rest is a tiny dot on the sweep of feminist/atheist history.
If you are suffering today—physically, emotionally, financially, or spiritually—perhaps the Lord is trying to get your attention.
Maybe you’re a professing Christian—you believe in Jesus Christ, but you have no relationship with Him. You haven’t actively sought Him through His word, the Bible. No doubt you have your reasons—too busy, perhaps, or not interested, or maybe you were exposed to scripture when you were a kid and figure you already know all you need to know about Him.
Or maybe you’re religiously pluralistic, convinced that it doesn’t matter what you believe just as long as you’re a good person who believes in something. You acknowledge some sort of supreme being, so you’re good; if there is a heaven, you’ll be fine.
Or perhaps you’re not so good. Perhaps you’ve lived such a sinful life that you know you’re headed for the other place. You’re sure that there’s no way out, not for you.
Whatever your circumstances, if you are suffering, rest assured that the Lord knows it, controls it, and is at work in your life. And if any of the descriptions above sound even remotely familiar to you, realize that this may be the only way He’ll ever be able to get your attention, and therefore to save you—putting you irrevocably on the path to heaven, as promised in the gospel of Jesus Christ.
Will it work?
Will you repent and trust in Him to have paid your entire sin debt on the cross?
That’s up to you, of course. But consider: If you are saved, this world is as close to hell as you’ll ever get. But if you are not, this world is as close to heaven as you’ll get.
Seems like a no-brainer, doesn’t it?