Runaway Meadows

Faith. Family. Farming.

Why a Good God Let a Bad Thing Happen

3 years ago · 2 MIN READ

Cynics love to ask the stumper, “Why would a good God let bad things happen?”


Why would a bright sun let shadows happen? Why does hot let cold happen? Why does yin let yang happen? Why do action movies let chick flicks happen?

While my tendency is to blow off this type of not-so-deep question, I understand that evidence can often be convincing. So here’s mine.

In January of 2014, God let us get rear-ended during a snow storm. I can’t believe He didn’t just make the car behind us grow spikes on its wheels, and protect our rear-end with some magic wall of ice, a la Elsa from Frozen. But alas, He didn’t.

And now I know why.

That icy fender-bender did 2 things: First, it got us a much nicer van (didn’t take much to total that $3k beauty). Second, it got me checking my rear-view mirror every time I had to slow down or stop on the highway. This habit has often come in handy in the months since then. For example, that one time 6 months later when we again got rear-ended, only this time it was by a skidding semi-truck.

We had come to a complete stop on I-71 in Kentucky. A construction crew had the highway down to one lane, but had failed to put the required “lane ends, merge left” warning signs a few miles earlier. As I watched over the hill behind me in the rear-view mirror, the highway was empty. Empty. Empty.

Then, as I saw the 18-wheeler coming up over the hill, I realized there was not enough space from the crest of that hill to where we were stopped for him to make a complete stop. The driver skillfully worked the breaks and eased off to the side of the road, but his empty flat-bed trailer began to swing out from behind him. I stomped on the gas and angled toward the opposite shoulder, but not quite fast enough to avoid getting clipped by the broadside of that skidding flatbed.


It was over. I looked back, and everyone in the van was OK. We pulled to the side of the road to assess the situation.

Sofy and Elliot were in the far back seat of the van because Jenny’s parents were riding with us on this particular “vacation.” The top rear corner of the van closest to Sofy had been crushed in by the semi – to within about 18 inches of her head.

Smashed red minivanA close call – but could’ve been closer.Friends, if God had not let one bad thing happen, a much worse thing would have happened instead. If He had not given me the experience and lessons from the first crash, my dear Sofy would be dead. And probably Elliot too.

Hindsight is 20-20, eh?

But unfortunately for all who oppose The Lord, God has a critical part for Sofy to play in His ongoing revolution. Sometimes a person dies too young, and God’s salvation story comes out because of their death. For Sofy, I am grateful to say it will be in her life.


Mark Potter

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