The worst hurricane to strike the East Coast in a century has claimed more than 20 lives across eight states. As of this morning, the U.S. government estimates that the cost from wind damage alone will exceed $1 billion. Downed power lines have left more than four million people without electricity.
Such innocent suffering is the toughest theological issue Christians face. Our King is all-knowing–he saw the storm before it began to form in the Atlantic. He is all-powerful–the One who “rebuked the wind and waves, and it was completely calm” (Matthew 8:26) could have stilled Irene. He is all-loving–he grieves every loss caused by this tragedy. And yet he permitted the devastation he now mourns.