Conversation Starters: Why Do Bad Things Happen?

Posted by Karah

Use these discussion starters to help foster a spiritual conversation with your family.

Skeptics have dismissed the biblical view of God by saying, “If God loves us, He must not be all-powerful or else He would stop all suffering” and “If God is all-powerful and could stop suffering but doesn’t, He must not be loving.” This moves from a philosophical discussion to a real issue when we are the ones suffering. The Bible is honest with the issue of suffering, and assures us of God’s sovereignty and presence in the midst of whatever we are facing.

Concept: Why do bad things happen?


Genesis 3

THE POINT: God wants us to obey Him.

What wrong choice did Adam and Eve make?

What did God do when they disobeyed Him?

LIVE IT OUT: Remind your child that God made him and he is able to make choices. Help your child think about and name right choices and wrong choices. Point out that God wants us to make right choices.


Genesis 3

THE POINT: All people sin.

What was Adam and Eve’s sin?

How did God punish Adam and Eve?

How can you keep from sinning?

LIVE IT OUT: Dialogue with your child about the first people who sinned. Attempt to pick out one sin that both you and your child struggle with. Pray together, asking God for help in resisting that sin. Be practical.


Job 30:26-31; 42:1-6

THE POINT: God is with us in our suffering.

Why do painful experiences cause us to doubt God?

How has God walked with you through a painful experience?

Have a conversation around this quote:

God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks in our conscience, but shouts in our pains: it is His megaphone to rouse a deaf world.1 —C.S. Lewis

LIVE IT OUT: Choose a verse you would like to share about pain and suffering and discuss it with your student.

Help your student identify someone who is going through a tough time and how she might help him or her.

Pray that your student will be an encouragement to others.

1. Walter Hooper, ed., C.S. Lewis: Readings for Meditation and Reflection (New York: HarperCollins, 1992), 71.

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