We sometimes wonder why God doesn’t just end suffering. But we know that whatever the reason, it isn’t one of indifference or remoteness. God so hates suffering and evil that he was willing to come into it and become enmeshed in it.
Dorothy Sayers wrote, ‘For whatever reason, God chose to make man as he is – limited and suffering and subject to sorrows and death – he [God] has the honesty and the courage to take his own medicine. Whatever game he is playing with this creation, he has kept his own rules and played fair. He can exact nothing from man that he has not exacted from himself. He has himself gone through the whole of human experience, from the trivial irritations of family life and the cramping restrictions of hard work and lack of money to the worst horrors of pain and humiliation, defeat, despair, and death. When he was a man, he played the man. He was born in poverty and died in disgrace, and thought it was worthwhile.’
The gift of Christmas gives you a resource – a comfort and consolation – for dealing with suffering, because in it we see God’s willingness to enter this world of suffering with us and for us.