Is It OK To Ask Why?

September 11, 2013
James 1:2-8

(All scripture is from the New King James Version unless otherwise indicated.)

I’ve heard it said a number of times, and probably you have too – “We shouldn’t ask why.”  This is often said when things happen to us, especially difficult things that touch our lives.  The thinking behind this statement is that we really aren’t meant to know the ‘Why?’ behind what has happened.  We are just to trust God with blind faith, and push on with our Christian lives.

I say, “Hogwash!”  And James 1:2-8 backs me up!

    My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the
    testing of your faith produces patience.  But let patience have its perfect work,
    that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.  If any of you lacks
    wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and
    it will be given to him.  But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who
    doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind.  For let not that
    man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded
    man, unstable in all his ways.

Let’s take this scripture apart and see what God through James is telling us.

•    First, why should we “…count it all joy when you fall into various trials…”?  Because the Lord is doing a work in our life!  Trials produce patience (see Romans 5:3-5), and patience will produce in us character that will be “…perfect and complete, lacking nothing.”  Now, the only One who is  “…perfect and complete, lacking nothing,” is Jesus, and it is God’s design to mold you and me into that same image (see Romans 8:29).  So when we experience trials in our life, we can mark it down – actually a book-keeping term – on the good side of the ledger (see Romans 8:28)!

•    Second – and this deals with Is It OK To Ask Why? – we are to ask God for wisdom concerning the trial we are experiencing.  ‘Wisdom’ is ‘knowledge properly applied to life’.  So if we lack the knowledge concerning the trial we are undergoing – and how it all fits together in our lives – we are to ask God, “…and it will be given to him.”  We are to ask ‘Why?’ in the trials we experience!  God does not want us to go blindly through life in the dark – especially during the hard times!

•    Third, if we ask, we are to ask in faith believing that God wants to give us the answer to our ‘Why?’  According to Hebrews 11:1 and 6 (NIV)…

        Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do
        not see….And without faith it is impossible to please God, because
        anyone who comes to Him must believe that he exists and that he rewards
        those who earnestly seek Him.

Being sure of what you can’t see – that’s real faith!  We can’t perceive God by
our five senses, but He is real!  And He rewards those who seek Him with that
sure belief!  So we are to ask God expecting an answer!  Otherwise we won’t
receive a thing!

So the next time you are facing some difficult experience, and you are asking yourself, Is It OK To Ask Why?  Go ahead and ask!  God delights in His children who exercise faith!  The answer might come in bits and pieces – and take some time in coming – but you will get an answer to your ‘Why?’  And you will understand better what the Lord is doing in your life.

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