I received this devotional a week ago from one of my FAVE authors, Elisabeth Elliot. It further answers the questions I've pondered about God's allowment of difficulties in one's life...
The Power of Darkness
"When the chief priests, temple officers, and elders came to the Garden of Gethsemane to arrest Jesus, they succeeded only because a sovereign God permitted them to succeed. Jesus pointed out that He was teaching daily in the Temple, yet they never laid a finger on Him. Now they were after Him with swords and staves. 'But this is your hour, and the power of darkness is yours' (Lk 22:53 JBP). Who gave them that hour? Who allowed them the power to capture Him? It was God, without whose leave not even a sparrow can fall to the ground. God is omnipotent, never slumbering, just, righteous, and forever in control. He was not taken by surprise. All was working then, as it is always working, into a pattern for good.
Our own difficulties often appear to be random. Our tragedies look wildly uncontrolled. They are not. They are subject. Limits are set. God is quietly at work, standing in the shadows, ceaselessly watching over His children.
'The light shines on in the dark, and the darkness has never mastered it' (Jn l:5 NEB)."
Love, Love, Love it.
~ christa jean