Talk About Suffering Here Below

        Darin Aldridge called me yesterday. One of his band members had some sickness in the family, and he wanted to know if I could fill in. He asked if I would troop over after the office to play a church revival service.  I checked my watch and the rest of the afternoon schedule and had enough time to make it with thirty minutes to spare. It took two seconds to decide.


        If you know me at all you know this. If I’m not on call, and you want me to play music, it’s “have mandolin will travel.”  This is extra true with Darin and Brooke Aldridge. One trip through “White Robe” with those children is a revival for old Doc all by itself.

        Ricky Skaggs does an old spiritual number called “Talk About Suffering.” I see a lot of suffering in my work, and like to believe my music helps dull the pain for a while. I don’t know if it does for other folks but it sure does help me.

        Last night the preacher talked about suffering. No human has ever suffered more than Christ. When we go through hard times some good can come out of it if we wind up more empathetic to our fellow human beings. If we can somehow deal with our troubles more like Christ would it puts us a step closer to perfection even though we can never get there on our own. We aren’t gonna be perfect, and just have to accept the Grace that forgives us for that.

        I believe some people wind up as excellent counselors, ministers, nurses, or doctors because they were able to take their own suffering, come to terms with it, and then use the insight as a tool to develop empathy. But here’s the human coming out in me. It seems like some of my people have suffered enough. They are already as Christ-like as any humans I know, and more keeps coming at ‘em. Sometimes I want to ask God how come he doesn’t put some of that on the bad guys who seem to be more in need of the lessons. I guess it’s because I’m only human and it isn’t for me to understand. I ain’t the Judge.

        Maybe it’s because we are supposed to pray for the bad guys too. I often fall short on that, so I’ll work on it. But I’m still gonna pray my friends are relieved of suffering too. Pain and suffering are against my office policy, and I need all the help I can get.

Dr. B

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6 Comments on “Talk About Suffering Here Below”

  1. Martin Waddell Says:

    Age-old problem, isn’t it – why do rotten things keep on happening to good people, while the bad guys keep on getting away with it? I’ve heard some people claim that, if bad things are happening to you, it’s your own fault, because God is punishing you for your sins (I even came across one guy who wrote a book saying that it might be because of sins committed by your ancestors!), but how people can say that from a Christian perspective in the face of things like the Book of Job and John chapter 9 beats me. I absolutely agree with your comment about having to pray for the bad guys – there’s one bad guy in particular for whom I’ve been praying for ages, at the same time as he’s been doing bad stuff to friends of mine. So far, no answer to prayer that I can see, but like you I need to work on it. I suppose that it will all come out ok in God’s own good time, but it isn’t easy to hold on to that sometimes.

    • drtombibey Says:


      Man you hit on the things that are tough for me, too. I’ve been pretty lucky but some of my friends are such good people and have not fared so well.

      I do think they will see perfect harmony and peace for all Eternity, though, and that is very big.

      To me it ain’t God’s fault when things go bad, and I agree with you and don’t think it’s that He is punishing us. The bad is just Satan getting his way in a skirmish, but in the war for Eternity the devil is a loser.

      Dr. B

  2. Baby Bibey Says:

    The once was an old man who won a beautiful white horse. “What luck!” he exclaimed. A few months went by and his young son was bucked off the horse and broke his hip. The father enraged killed the horse, and his young son would never walk without a limp again. Years went by and all of the son’s peers were sent to war. Every one of them was slaughtered. While mothers and father cried over their lost children, the father hugged his son and thought of the horse that saved him from the fate of his peers.

    All of us have burdens, crosses to bare, but give them time and keep trying… Things have a ways of working themselves out, even if we fail to have the vision to know it. Love you always.

  3. newt221 Says:

    The Devil has his hand in it most of the time. But, God has the “upper hand”. We all go through trials. Some have more than others. And, I agree that we are blessed if we can have empathy for others. Praying for the “bad guys” is talked about a lot in the Bible. Jesus knew how hard it was to do that. It is really freeing though to turn it all over to God. He works wonders in us with the trials that we have had. On judgement day, all those “bad guys” have to stand before God and explain “why” they did what they did. And, God will look at us and explain “why” the things that happened to us changed us for the better.

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