There Is No Messing Around With God

Source: Reflection of Goodwill taken from the book “Jesus, a Dor e a origem de Sua Autoridade — O Poder do Cristo em nós” [Jesus, the Pain and Origin of His Authority — The Power of Christ Within Us], November 2014. | Updated in May 2018.

When faced by adversity, some people say: “God does not exist because something bad happened to me!”

But what about the good things that happen to others every minute of the day and that once happened to you as well? What about the good things that will happen to you? People who complain sometimes selfishly forget that although they are suffering at that moment―but have already had lots of happy moments―many people at that very moment are joyfully rejoicing. Nevertheless, as I stated in my book Sabedoria de Vida [Wisdom of Life] (2001), God is the Divine Compassion that enlightens intransigent pessimists.

NASA, ESA, R. O'Connell, F. Paresce, E. Young, WFC3 Comitê

In fact, by this reasoning we do not wish to disdain the anguish of anyone who may be lamenting a lifetime of suffering. Instead, we work to alleviate the ordeal of these dear spiritual and human beings by presenting them with the supreme example of Christ, who, being the Heavenly Father’s  Beloved Son, suffered the martyrdom of a world that is, until today, savage. He made Light, Power, and Authority shine even brighter in this world, not for Himself, I repeat, but for His brothers and sisters.

However, a gigantic step towards personal fulfilment is being able to free ourselves from exaggerated selfishness, which does not allow us to recognize a strong impulse for sustaining our Soul in the contentment of others.

In Como Vencer o Sofrimento [How to Overcome Suffering] (1990) I advised: If you want to diminish your pain, help those who suffer.

Tela: James Tissot (1836-1902)


In my article “Calming the Storm,” which was published in 2013 in several newspapers and on many websites, I wrote: Faced with a wide variety of situations, in which pain and suffering afflict us, often without warning, a gesture of solidarity is essential when providing spiritual and material help for others. Alongside this immediate support, we need to nurture the strength of hope and of Accomplishing Faith, which drive human beings to remain under the protection of the Heavenly Father and encourage them to roll up their sleeves and turn their fair supplications into a reality.

Arquivo BV

Emily Dickinson

These beautiful words by American poet Emily Dickinson (1830-1886) are very appropriate:

“If I can stop one heart from breaking,

I shall not live in vain;

If I can ease one life the aching,

Or cool one pain,

Or help one fainting robin

Unto his nest again,

I shall not live in vain.”

Therefore, it is time to stop blaming God—decisively—for our reckless and foolish behavior, among which is destroying our collective dwelling while we engage in a byzantine discussion as to “how many angels can dance on the head of a pin.”

José de Paiva Netto is a writer, journalist, radio broadcaster, composer, and poet. He is the President of the Legion of Good Will (LGW), effective member of the Brazilian Press Association (ABI) and of the Brazilian International Press Association (ABI-Inter). Affiliated to the National Federation of Journalists (FENAJ), the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ), the Union of Professional Journalists of the State of Rio de Janeiro, the Union of Writers of Rio de Janeiro, the Union of Radio Broadcasters of Rio de Janeiro, and the Brazilian Union of Composers (UBC). He is also a member of the Academy of Letters of Central Brazil. He is an author of international reference in the concept and defense of the cause of Ecumenical Citizenship and Spirituality which, according to him, constitute “the cradle of the most generous values that are born of the Soul, the dwelling of the emotions and of the reasoning enlightened by intuition, the atmosphere that embraces everything that transcends the ordinary field of matter and comes from the elevated human sensitivity, such as Truth, Justice, Mercy, Ethics, Honesty, Generosity, and Fraternal Love.”