There's an old Chinese Proverb by an unknown author that goes something like this:
There is a Chinese story of a farmer who used an old horse to till his fields. One day, the horse escaped into the hills and when the farmer's neighbors sympathized with the old man over his bad luck, the farmer replied, "Bad luck? Good luck? Who knows?" A week later, the horse returned with a herd of horses from the hills and this time the neighbors congratulated the farmer on his good luck. His reply was, "Good luck? Bad luck? Who knows?"
Then, when the farmer's son was attempting to tame one of the wild horses, he fell off its back and broke his leg. Everyone thought this very bad luck. Not the farmer, whose only reaction was, "Bad luck? Good luck? Who knows?"
Some weeks later, the army marched into the village and conscripted every able-bodied youth they found there. When they saw the farmer's son with his broken leg, they let him off. Now was that good luck or bad luck?
Everything that seems on the surface to be an evil may be a good in disguise. And everything that seems good on the surface may really be an evil. So we are wise when we leave it to God to decide what is good fortune and what misfortune, and thank him that all things turn out for good with those who love him.
A preacher I used to listen to told this proverb during a sermon once, and I've remembered it for years. It was a major theme in one of my novels, The Ransom, and is something I try to live my life by. The moral, of course, is that when tragedy strikes, we often react negatively. "Oh no! Why did this happen to me? Why, God, why? Don't you love me?" So many people use tragedy as an excuse to reject God and drift away, thinking that God either doesn't exist or if He does, He certainly doesn't love them. This theme also runs through my next release, Charity's Cross. Charity is severely abused by her husband, a situation for which she entirely blames God. It's a natural human emotion and reaction! I've done it as well.
Imagine that the world is a gigantic maze of winding, twisting paths, all interconnected. Some lead to nowhere and a person gets stuck. Some lead to dark places, some lead to light. We humans are all in the maze, making our way through life. When we come to a place that divides off into multiple directions, we must choose which way to go based on very limited information. We only see what is directly in front of us. And we only know what was behind us. How do we make the best choice?
The truth is God is the maze-master. He is standing over the maze and He sees every part of it, every section, every division, every path. He sees you at point A. but His plan is to get you to point B, and because He can see the entire maze, He knows the best route to get you there. He sees how things will end up if you choose the wrong path or even if you divert just a tiny bit from the path He wants you to take.
He also sees that along the path He wants you to take, bad things will happen to you. But those bad things are necessary to keep you on that path and get you safely to point B . If those bad things didn't happen, you would not be able to stay on the right path.
Now, imagine that He is orchestrating this for every one of His children, many of whose paths will cross each others! Ah, it boggles my mind how incredibly brilliant God is. But I digress.
My point is. Our view is SO LIMITED. We have no idea about so many things in this life. The best thing... the MOST IMPORTANT thing to do is to stay close to God and be led by His Spirit. And when tragedy strikes (that is not of your own doing), instead of complaining, thank God, and ask Him, not only what you are to learn from it, but to show you the purpose of it. He will. Eventually :-) It comes down to trust. Do you trust the Maze-Master ?