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Is it Wrong to Be Angry at God?

By: Kristen Clark

I held her little furry body in one hand as she licked my face. This tiny puppy had me at “ruh-roh.”

She was so small and yet so full of life. I looked at my husband, Zack, and he knew I was sold.

“I guess this means we’re taking the puppy.” He said to the owner.

We exchanged money and paperwork and before I knew it I was holding a 1 lb., 8 week old Maltipoo puppy on my lap as we drove home. She was my early Christmas present.

“I just love her!” I said with a huge smile as her big black eyes looked into mine. “She is the cutest, most precious dog I have ever seen!”

I’ve always loved dogs, but have never owned one for myself. This was my very first puppy and the third member of our little family.

We named her Adelaide and called her Addie for short. We took her with us to my in-laws for Thanksgiving the next day and she stole the hearts of everyone who saw her. Things were going great and we loved this new edition to our family.

Then Saturday came.

Addie wasn’t herself and began showing lots of signs of sickness. We immediately took her to the vet and he gave us some medicine for her and encouraged us to keep her hydrated. We brought her home again, but she wouldn’t eat or drink anything.

She began declining so quickly that Zack and I decided to stay up all night to monitor her health and feed her water and electrolytes through a small syringe. We set our alarms to go off every 40 minutes all night long.

It was one of the longest nights of my life.

It ripped my heart out to watch this little puppy stumble across the newspaper as she tried to go to the bathroom. I could hardly bear to watch.

Around 3:45AM I was lying on the carpet in our living with Addie lying pitifully next to me on a towel. I was praying so hard that God would spare our little puppies life, and honestly, I really thought He would.

Then, without warning, she opened her mouth and breathed an unusually loud breath, then her body went limp.

“Addie!” I said frantically, shaking her little body to wake her up. Nothing. Zack came running over and shook her little body as well. She didn’t move.

I instantly burst into tears as I watched my little puppy lay helpless and lifeless on our living room floor. Zack and I held each other on the couch and cried until the sun came up.

“Why did God let Addie die?!”

I questioned angrily to my husband. “She was so full of life! Why would He do this to us?! This is so unfair!”

For the first time in a very long time, I sensed anger in my heart towards God. I had become so attached to little Addie in just four days, that losing her felt like losing a long time family member. I couldn’t understand why God would allow us the joy of having a sweet puppy, only to take her away so agonizingly.

Before I could say anything else, my husband quickly opened his Bible and began reading some much needed truth to my weary soul.

By the way, this happened just three days ago. My heart is still extremely sad, but my soul has found rest.

Have you ever had a moment like mine where you felt angry at God?

The sudden loss of my puppy revealed some things in my heart I had no idea were there. I surprised myself with my anger and began questioning whether or not it was wrong to be mad at God.

Deep down in my heart, I knew what the answer was, but decided to do some research.

Here’s what I discovered:

1. We don’t get angry at God until a tragedy or loss strikes.

Most people aren’t angry at God if everything is going great in their life. Once things turn south, we tend to question God’s goodness and get angry at Him for allowing it to happen.

That is the first flaw in our thinking. God never promises you or me a pain free, tragedy free life. In fact, He actually tells us the opposite will happen: John 16:33 says, “In the world you will have tribulation.” And 1 Peter 4:12 says, “Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you.”

Ever since sin entered our world pain and suffering came with the package. If we think God owes us a wonderful life without trials and suffering, we’re asking Him for a world without sin. Death, pain suffering, and loss are all a part of the fall.

The good news is that as Christians, God gives us a very hopeful promise: “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose” (Romans 8:28).

We can have confidence because, “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me” (Psalm 23:4). God is with us every step of the way.

2. By getting angry at God, we question His sovereignty.

The word sovereign means that there is absolutely nothing that happens in the universe that is outside of God’s influence and authority. He is the ultimate source of all power, authority, and everything that exists is under His control.

When we question God, we are basically saying that He doesn’t know what He’s doing. When we get angry at God for allowing a trial to happen in our lives, we are saying “I know better than you God.”

We don’t always know why God allows certain things to happen to us, but what we DO know is this: “Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him” (James 1:12).

We’re also commanded to count our sufferings as joy because they make us stronger and more solid Christians. James 1:2 says, “Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness.”

The bottom line is this: God is God and we are not.

He sees the BIG picture and all we see is a tiny spec through a microscope. God knows what’s best for us even if it hurts. However, we can take comfort in the fact that God is always in control and will never allow something to happen to us outside of His will.

Those key truths helped me realize how wrong I was for being angry at God after my puppy died. My anger was completely out of line.

Yes, we will be sad and distraught at times during our life – but we will never be without hope.

We will face trials, but we won’t ever face them alone.

Sin is the reason we feel pain on this earth. Thankfully, as believers we have the promise that one day “He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away” (Revelation 21:4).

So to answer the question in the title of this blog, YES – it is very wrong to be angry at God. He is the only source of comfort and peace we have during our storms. Turning our backs on Him will shut out the only true peace and comfort we have.

If you’re struggling with being angry at God right now, I encourage you to confess your sin to Him and ask Him to help you endure your trial. Ask Him to make you more like Jesus as a result of your suffering. Ask Him to use your painful experiences to comfort and help somebody else.

Remember God is our Father and He loves us more than anyone else in this entire world could love us.

He is on our side and will stick with us through the thick and thin.

Are you dealing with a trial right now? Do you find yourself getting angry at God?

How can you apply the truths in this blog to help you have a right mindset? Do you believe God is in control of your life and loves you?

I would love to hear from you! How has God helped you overcome hard times in your life? Share in the comment section below!

Photo credit: www.flickr.com | Mommmo

Sad Girl

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  • BlueBuddy

    WOW!!!! God works so amazingly! I really needed this! Me an my daddy had a puppy, Toby, that we loved so much. He was nine months old and we’d had him since he was eight weeks old. We’d fought the mange…… We’d conquered the mange. Toby was the best. The sweetest. The handsomest golden retriever/ collie pup you’d ever see. Then on Monday morning 5 weeks ago, daddy let him out of the house early to use the potty and around 7:30 he was ran over. I woke up to a ruckus and immediately went outside and called Toby and Rocky. But only Rocky came. Toby was layin by the mailbox lifeless. The puppy that last night id been running around the house with, playing our favorite game. The pup, I had been playing fetch with….. Just hours before. Lifeless. It killed me inside as well as my daddy. He was closer to him than I even was. I was mad at God. I didn’t understand why God would let Toby die so young. When he had years ahead. YEARS. But, he didn’t have years ahead. God didn’t intend for him to have years ahead. He would live to be two days before he turned nine months. That’s how long he was SUPPOSED to live. That fact has taken me five weeks to swallow. I don’t know why he had to die. Honestly, it was probably to teach me that HE is in control. He can take things away from us. Things that we love dearly. And I’m accepting that fact.

    • Hey BlueBuddy…that sounds like a really tough situation with Toby. I am so sorry. But you’re right, The Lord gives and He takes away…the biggest question is can we still say, “Blessed be the name of the Lord?”

  • A.A.

    Friday was the worst day of my life. It’s a long story, but basically I laid on my bed and cried for hours. At that point I felt the lowest I ever have. I felt hopeless. I started to get angry at God, because He let this happen. If He loved me how could he do this to me? Then I realized God is my only hope, so I couldn’t stay mad at Him. So I prayed a lot and He showed me all the ways He could use this to benefit myself and others. It could bring me closer to Him, it could strengthen my faith, it could give me a testimony to be used later to comfort other girls going through this. So I realized how wrong it was to abandon the only one who always loves me. I didn’t stay mad at God, but I didn’t exactly let him work in my life. These past couple of days I’ve been letting my relationship with God weaken. But I read this post and I realized what was happening. So now I’m gonna fix it. Thank you.

    • Hey A.A., For whatever happened on Friday night I am so sorry. We’re all going to face incredibly hard situations at times, and it sounds like you turned to God in the end. Way to go! I am so grateful this post encouraged you to get your relationship back on track with God.

  • CT

    About 6 months ago, we had an unexpected basement flood. We found out that the house had flooded before (before we bought the house), so one night when it was especially rainy and the power went out, my dad stayed up for much of the night to watch the sump pump. Nothing went wrong. At 3 am, the power came back on, the sump pump started running again, and my dad went to bed. Yet at 8 am that morning we went downstairs only to find a soggy basement! And we had watched the thing all night some more! Needless to say, it was a major headache with cleanup (the basement is now dry, but still messy and furniture out of place), but I know that God had a reason for it and He is using it to teach us whatever lessons He wants us to learn.

    • Sounds like a big mess CT! Your last statement is key: “I know that God had a reason for it and He is using it to teach us whatever lessons He wants us to learn.” That is a great perspective to have.

  • Elizabeth

    I have gone through several trials over the last few years. Breaking my tailbone and coming to realize I have pelvis problems, leaving my church of 13 years, realizing that I am not to have a boyfriend anytime soon. Just to name a few. I too, Kristen lost my dog this year. It tore my heart to see and hear a car run over him. Through all this, I had a choice to make: Be angry at God or make Him my anchor during the storms. I’m so glad I made the second choice. God has done so much in my life. He is my strength! A good reminder for me has been Psalm 105:4. “Seek the Lord and his strength. Seek his face continually.”

    • Hey Elizabeth, I am so glad you made the second choice as well. Good job turning back to God instead of turning away from Him. I love that verse as well!

  • Dia

    Kristen-

    I enjoy mentoring young women, and am always looking for resources to point them to. I just recently discovered your blog, and have been encouraged and inspired by the maturity and wisdom you sisters express in addressing today’s issues.
    I want to begin by saying I am SOOO sorry for your loss, and am thankful for your willingness to share your raw feelings so transparently. I understand how quickly our hearts can fall for the furry companions who share our earthly existence, and I know the grief of saying goodbye to them as well. You are so very blessed to have a loving and thoughtful husband to point you to scripture at such a time!
    I have been going through a trial of far different sorts recently, and wanted to share something that I have clung to when I find myself with unchecked emotions toward God. It seems that the feelings and emotions we experience when we first find ourselves facing grief or loss or confusion are rather common. Although I completely agree with the conclusions in your post, I would like to encourage you with something that I learned so very long ago when dealing with a personal crisis (and continue to be reminded of in my current trial).
    Years ago, in the midst of crying out in pain and asking “WHY, GOD, WHY?!” the Holy Spirit directed me to Psalm 103. It is an awesome reminder of God’s lovingkindness and knowledge of us, His children. It is one of the most eloquent and thorough portions of scripture to speak so beautifully of His forgiveness. Since that time, I have found myself in similar situations (not often, but still) where I do question God or find myself angry at Him. It is in those times I take comfort in verses 8-14, but especially vs 14: “for he knows how we are formed, he remembers that we are dust.” The One who created us out of humble dirt knows we will fail to trust and understand at times, and loves us anyway. He does not accuse me, but lets me rage, and holds me close to His loving heart in that moment. The fact that in His unfathomable grace and unconditional love He does not condemn me, but allows me to express my emotions, is a source of comfort that has brought me into a deeper relationship of trust. “His kindness leads me to repentance” (Romans 2:4) time and time again. Of course, it is THEN that I am fully able to grasp the truths of His sovereignty that you stated in your post, and in humilty and gratitude, I fall on my knees in worship and awe! I believe He allowed you to express the questions first, so you could better understand the truth.
    So-Is it wrong to be angry at God? I do not think so, IF we do not stay there, and instead turn to Him.Then, as you said, admit our weakness and lack of faith, and let Him draw us closer as a result.
    Many blessings as you continue to wrestle with the tough questions, and serve the AWESOME God we do.
    Dia

    • Hi Dia, thanks so much for taking the time to share from your heart! It sounds like God has taught you a lot over the years. Psalm 103 is my favorite Psalm as well and I have turned to it on many occasions (in fact, that was the first Psalm my husband turned to when he opened his Bible that sad night). Thank you for your insights and wisdom! May God continue to use you to impact many young women for His Kingdom.

  • Ann Garcia

    amen

  • Joy

    I lost my grandpa on February 21st of this year. I was so angry at God asking why he couldnt just let me see him one more time before he passed away! He was sick for a little while and my dad was able to go visit him but I wasn’t. He lived in Florida and we didn’t have the money for all of us to go down. I still remember that night that he passed away it was 11 o’clock and I was sleeping when my mom came to wake me up and tell me. I tried to be tough and not cry at least not in front of her because I never cry in front of people but I was so angry at God I vowed not to talk to him until one day I don’t remember what we were doing but I just thought that maybe I was wrong for being mad at him for this long and what if God was like us were every time we did something that hurt him and he never talked to us after that. That thought struck so close to home.

    I said all that to say thanks for this post it was great! 🙂

    • Joy, I am so sorry about your grandpa. Losing a loved one is never easy! I am so grateful you found this post helpful. And you’re right – what if God turned His back on us every time we “disappointed” Him? Thankfully, His mercies are new every morning!

  • Samantha

    The past year and a half have been really tough for me. I grew up Mennonite. We left our church to do mission work among the Old Order Mennonites. Many people dont like what we r doin and lots of false rumors have been spread about us.So I lost friends. Most of my friends now live in different states and I dont get to see them a whole lot. I struggle a lot with loneliness and I’m rarely with other teenagers. I have to admit I’ve often gotten angry at God, but when I look back on how much I’ve grown spiritually in that time I know that its for the better. I have learned so much that I would not have otherwise. When everything else was stripped away from me and God was all I had I suddenly realized that God was MORE than enough. I can still depend on God when all of my friends are gone. I’m so glad we followed God’s leading cuz anymore I really wouldn’t want it any other way.

    • Brooke

      Samantha I too moved this past year. It has been hard but I have grown spiritually and my walk with God has gotten closer! My church has mostly older people and barely anyone my age so it’s a challenge meeting friends sense I’m homeschooled. In Gods timibg you will make friends and hopefully good Godly ones! I’ll be praying for you! Your sister in Christ

      • Samantha

        Yes I definitely want godly friends! Its a blessing knowing someone’s praying for me. Thanks a lot for the encouragement!!!

    • Kristina Stutzman

      Samantha, I can somewhat relate to what you struggle with. 12 years ago my family left the amish church because they did not want my Dad to follow his calling which was praying with people and helping them overcome their struggles. Its been a tough battle with family excepting us but a few have since reconnected with us again. Like you, I’m also glad that my Family chose to follow God and stand up for Truth instead of backin away. 🙂

      • Samantha

        Thanks for replying. Its definitely an encouragement and a blessing to hear from others who went through the same thing.

        • Krisina Stutzman

          You’re welcome 🙂 it blessed me to read your comment Thank You!

  • Lauren

    A couple of years ago, we lost our new puppy as well. We too, were desperate in finding out “Why would God allow such a thing?!” But after many tears, we came to realize that God is still good, despite what goes on here in this natural realm. One verse that really helped my family during this time, was Isaiah 43:19.

    “Behold, I am doing a new thing;
    now it springs forth, do you not perceive it?”
    No matter the situation, God CAN shed His light and work all things for good even in the darkest situations. (a great example: bringing our Savior when we needed him!)
    Sweet blessings to you through this time.

  • Danielle

    I have passed many difficult situations in my life in many areas. Right now I’m serving at a christian ministry in a third world country that assists children and families at risk. All the lack of opportunities because of poverty brings them to live with several abusive situations (physically and emotionally). The most recent one was a woman who is working at the sewing program, the husband raped her many times so she is separated (not divorce), one day the woman came to work she left her daughter (if she doesn’t work there is no food at home) at the little house they are renting telling her not to open the door to anyone, sadly the father controlled she was alone and asked the daughter to open the door because he was in need, an eleven year old girl innocent believed her father and he raped her. When the woman told me the story I couldn’t blame her for leaving her daughter alone neither the girl for opening the door, they are trying hard to survive and overcome all the trials and now another one hits hard. I was angry at the beginning with God and it was so hard for me to tell her “God is love and he is in control”, I hugged her and tried with body language express her God’s love through me. I still see her and its hard, I pray for her and I wish I could do more but He knows better why he allows so much pain and tragedy.

  • Kristina Stutzman

    I can most definitely relate to this post and this has been a great encouragement to me. The last few years have been a struggle to stay Faithful and let God direct my path and know what He is doing will be for the good in the end. Sometimes I get so tired of stayin strong and like that a friend texts me an encouraging (not knowing that I needed it) or I read something like this… Best thing I have found to help me when I am weak is to Praise Him in the storm. Thank you for sharing!

  • Brooklyn Mikinzie

    Im so very sorry for your loss. How heartbreaking.:( Maybe God allowed this situation to happen so that you could reach out to girls with this blog post.
    Sometimes I do have situations where I question God and wonder why he would allow something to happen. To be honest, sometimes when Im mad, I picture a puzzle piece. I think of God giving one to me and saying “Do you trust that the rest of this puzzle is beautiful, or are you going to get angry at how bad this one piece looks?”
    He sees the whole picture!

  • Jesusfreak17

    At youth group recently, we were talking about Romans 8:28, and I think one of the most important things they said was that it doesn’t mean that the bad things that happen to us are good. Losing your dog was not good. It just means that God will ultimately use them for good. 🙂

    • I completely agree with you. Death is never a “good” thing and we only have it because of sin. You’re right that God’s promise is to use the “bad” things that happen to us for His glory and our ultimate good. Great insight!

  • Bethany23

    I just want to thank you so much for this wonderful and very timely article. The subject matter and scriptures both touched me a lot. I did have a dog when I was little but she had to put down by the vet, so I understand your grief and loss. Thank you for sharing your story and giving me encouragement as I go through a difficult trials. God bless!

  • Marietta

    Your blogs are so beautiful and uplifting! I just love to have a break and take a look at your posts.

  • Mimi

    I lost my parakeet a few years ago and cried and cried. But the one who was really hurt from it was my mom and I think she grew farther away from God at the time


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