Yesterday, at approximately Spanish time, Israel Quero Espí, 18-year-old son of Spanish Baptist pastor Juan Manuel Quero, and his wife Araceli, died suddenly and unexpectedly. All the symptoms at this time point to bacterial meningitis. The night before, he had decided not to participate in a soccer game with some friends, complaining of a headache. In the morning, he woke up with a high fever, covered with dark splotches all over his body. Within an hour, before they could get him to the hospital, he was already dead.
Juan Manuel is pastor of
What explanation can be given for a tragedy like this? Humanly speaking, I can think of none. My natural tendency is to want to look for the “silver lining” behind this “dark cloud.” But, at this time, reality makes that very hard to do. Our faith leads us to cling to the hope that we will one day see
I have read the hypothesis that the various religions of the world are all attempts to make sense, one way or another, of human suffering. I think there is more to it than that, but, at the same time, believe there is an element of truth here. All of us as humans--Buddhists, Muslims, Jews, Zoroastrians, Christians, or Atheists--have to deal with suffering, at one time or another, and there are many things that don’t appear to make much sense. Yet, I believe that true biblical Christianity offers the only rational and coherent hope in the midst of this grim reality. Because of an all-powerful and all-knowing God, who loves us more than we are able to comprehend, and because of the death of His only Son, Jesus, on the cross of Calvary, we have hope that one day He will wipe away every tear from our eyes, and we will know, just as we are already known.
But that still doesn’t take away the pain that I am feeling right now, and that I know Juan Manuel, Araceli, and
What can we learn from this? First of all, we never know what a day may bring forth. We never know when tragedy may strike in our own lives. It could have just as easily happened to you, or me, or any one of us. I pray God may teach me, and all of us, to number our days, and to use, with a greater sense of stewardship, the gifts, time, and resources He has placed in our hands.
Also, this reminds me there are those around us all the time, who are going through great suffering. Many times, we are oblivious to this, until it strikes so close to home. I pray God would make me a more sensitive person to the needs of others, and allow me to show the love of Christ to those in need, in order that they may find hope in the midst of situations that otherwise give no reason for doing so.
If God lays it on your heart, please pray for Juan Manuel, Araceli, and Elías, and for the