Why Do Bad Things Happen To Innocent People?

Every day, I get dozens of emails from people responding to the†Daily Flame, the daily messages from your Inner Pilot Light that remind you who you are and invite you to tap into your own divine truth.

Some of the emails are worth sharing, like this one, that refers to†the post I wrote about how God helps me write these messages.

Dear Lissa,

I love the Daily Flame and have been particularly inspired or lifted up on days with language that was written directly to me, so yes, Lissa, God is helping you write sometimes.† But Iím actually writing for another reason.† Do you have any words of wisdom on how to make sense of horrible stories like the Dad who probably murdered his wife and then got his 5 and 7 year old sons from a social worker who brought them over for a supervised visit, used an axe on them and then blew up the house?

I can’t seem to shake this horrible story. A man who was in jail for murder and served only 4 years was recently let out and tried to abduct a 7† year old girl. Another 7 year old girl was brutally raped and murdered nearby.

As a divorced mom of 3, it makes me want to keep my kids at home, but also it makes me ask why God allowed that to happen. It makes me feel helpless and doomed over my problems that seem trivial in comparison to these.† How do you get beyond this or make sense of this? Where is God in these cases?



Dear A,

I’d love to answer your question fully but of course, I can’t.

Why do bad things happen to good, innocent, faith-filled people? Where is God in this?

My simple answer (and there is no simple answer) is that, if there is a “higher purpose,” a Divine plan, if you will, we can’t ever foresee it, so something that looks horrible may wind up being a piece of a much larger puzzle we just can’t understand.

For example, when I experienced my Perfect Storm six years ago, four “horrible,” life-altering losses happened to me – three of them within two weeks, all four within six months.

I felt like “Why me?” I was a good person. Why was I getting punished?

Only now, six years later, can I see the divinity in it, how perfectly crafted my path was in service to a higher good I couldn’t even imagine back then.

I also think God gives us free will. We’re not puppets, we’re free humans, and sometimes we make terrible choices, and God probably cries at how far off the path we’ve strayed.

So what can we make of this information?

Should we keep our children indoors because God might allow a serial killer to attack them?

No. Thatís not the answer. For me, it all comes back to faith. I love my daughter so much I can hardly stand it sometimes. I watch her sleep and I feel this rush of something – anxiety, gripping fear – because I canít even imagine how I would cope if something were to ever happen to her. That feeling can be so overwhelming that youíre tempted to keep your child in a cage and do everything you can to protect them from every possible tragedy that might ever befall them?

But then what? Should I cancel our ski trip to Tahoe because she might fall down and break her neck on those six-year old ski legs? Should I raise her to be terrified of stranger-danger, knowing full well that most tragedies that befall children are inflicted by people that arenít even strangers? Should I raise my child to be terrified of life, afraid of risk, unable to experience joy because something bad might be around every corner?

No. I want her to experience great joy and radiant love for every minute of this life she has, however long it should last.

I know I canít control my life – or hers. Long ago, (as I wrote about here) I gave her permission to break my heart, because really, thatís the only way to love. Everything else is a watered-down substitute.

What I can do is trust that whatever happens is part of my path, part of her journey, part of this thing called life that I will never understand.

What I do know is that the more time I spent fearing what might happen, the more I draw it to me. The more I rest in the faith that all is well and good things will come my way, the more that manifests.

I could go on, but suffice it to say, I hear you, love. I wish I had all the answers, but nobody does, do they?

All we can do is seek to find them within ourselves.

With faith,


What Do You Think?

Why do bad things happen to awesome people and innocent children? How do you make peace with this in your own mind, heart, and spirit?

Share your thoughts.




Melania Padilla
Melania Padilla5 years ago


Kathy Perez
Kathy Johnson5 years ago

because "God" is a scam and your attitude dictates a lot about your life.

Marie Therese Hanulak

If free will is so wonderful, why don't we give it to our toddlers?
Because it would be considered neglect and abandonment.
He's the father we are the children, do the maths!

Besides he gives us free will but if we don't do what HE wants, he'll burn our asses for eternity. Sort of takes away from the word free.

Kiana S.
Kiana S5 years ago

I'm not a religious person (I prefer to think of myself as open minded, rather than prescribing to any one faith). I think you're right on the mark though Lissa.

Victor M.
Victor M5 years ago

quantum randomness

Sheri P.
Sheri P5 years ago

thank you for the article...i appreciate hearing your thoughts!

heather g.
heather g5 years ago

I was listening to Wayne Dyer speaking earlier on - there's plenty of guidance in his books.

Sara Priscila
Sara Priscila5 years ago

There is no God. We build every moment of our life just by having thoughts... Have you ever heard about "The Secret"? :)

Brenda Towers
Brenda Towers5 years ago

Belief in God's justice does not stop me complaining to Him, and feeling hard done by!! It's just a natural human aggrieved response.

Brenda Towers
Brenda Towers5 years ago

We are all at risk,and it has nothing to do with goodness or evil behaviour. Justice will come on the day of judgement, by a loving, compassionate ,caring God. He will be much more compassionate to us than we deserve, because ahe knows every aspect of our lives and judges accordingly.