As a(n unpublished) novelist, I need to see my story as a whole in order for the specific scenes to make sense. Sometimes I will write an awesome scene which makes me all giggly inside because it’s so awesome, but if it doesn’t fit with the rest of the plot, I can’t use it. And sometimes I’ll write an awful scene which makes me hate the very characters I have created to the point that I don’t want to think about them anymore, but I have to keep writing because the story has to unfold. That awful scene which sometimes makes me cry as I type it is part of something greater. That awful scene is necessary to create my art.
Recently I realized something about God and everything that happens in this world. The world’s story which includes our individual stories is being written by God. If God is in control, then everything that happens, good or bad, happens because of God’s mercy; but we must try to understand things from God’s perspective.
Admittedly, this isn’t always easy. A child will likely not think of his bad childhood as an example of God’s mercy, but maybe when he grows up he will see that the bad things had to happen for the good things to happen. Some people think we must never ask God why bad things happen to us because doing so means we doubt Him and His ways, but I have never been the sort of person who just accepts whatever is given to me. I always have to ask why.
So I ask God ‘Why?’ all the time. Asking ‘Why?’ is, I think, is very Catholic because the Church teaches that we are wired for God and one way of knowing something thoroughly is by asking ‘Why?’ Also, understanding the reason behind the bad things makes you appreciate them more, like when you understand that your mom is not trying to torture you in making you eat your vegetables but she is actually trying to help you become healthier because she loves you.
The God who can do nothing but love will always love us. (Duh!) Once we drill that into our thick, stubborn skulls, we will gladly accept the bad things because we know that from them good things will result.