Why Bad Things Happen to Good People

Ever sit back in your easy chair and wonder, “Why bad things happen to good people?” You might know the best person, who lives a good life, gives in service to others, supports friends, family, strangers and the community with loving kindness, yet here they are; amidst a life crisis that no one should have to bear.

You might know this person so well, you might be sitting in his or her chair right now wondering why bad things happen to good people. You’re a good person. It’s not like you do anything wrong to other people. You’re a good and faithful servant. You’re growing and expanding every day, yet here you are face-to-face with the most incredible challenge; one you would not wish on your worst enemy.

As hard as it might be to fathom the idea when you’re amidst the storm of a life trial, there is a divine thread which connects all issues in life to lead us to our highest and best potential. You are blessed with opportunities to grow and change throughout your life, leading through various stages of metamorphosis as you continue on your life’s journey.

If you are WAY out of your comfort zone, feel severely challenged, overwhelmed, or find yourself sinking into a depressive state, chances are you’re facing a huge growth spurt on the other side of this time in your life. If you choose to embrace it.

You could, on the other hand, turn from it, not rise up to the challenge, and give in to the idea of accepting your lot in life as a mere mortal; a victim of life.

Or you can post up and ready yourself for battle, face the challenge head on, and emerge the victor, an inspiration for others who might be facing similar circumstances. The choice is yours, whether you accept the invitation to grow or to submit yourself to being victimized by life circumstances.

This is why it appears that bad things happen to good people. But if you can step back and look at bad things that have happened to good people, you see that some of the greatest, most inspirational stories have come from people who have overcome insurmountable odds, the worst imaginable things no person should ever have to bear. In this respect, there are no bad things, only challenges which are opportunities for growth (sometimes, enormous growth).

So, here you are. Possibly facing a circumstance that is impossible to imagine. You haven’t done anything to deserve this, yet here you are.

What will you do when faced with this challenge?

Sure, this would have taken out anyone else with a heart in a heartbeat. But what about the next person. Is it possible that your story, the story about how you faced, battled and defeated this dragon, going to save the life of someone else who may find themselves facing a similar dragon in the future?

Believe me, I know people who have done just that; they have looked fear, suffering, false accusations, physical and psychological trauma, and death, in the eye and definitively stated, “I will not let you take me out.”

Then, pick up their metaphoric sword and conduct the grueling hand-to-hand battle, emerging victorious, and lived to tell their story.

And I can tell you, people who have gone through such a transformative process are very different people than they once were. The person who comes out on the other side, even if they engaged in the battle and it may have appeared to us (the exterior witnesses) they lost the battle, the warrior is nonetheless transformed and has grown so much from the process.

Does that mean you have to fight every battle? No. You get to choose the battles you engage in, so pick your battles wisely, and in doing so, you can help to make the world a better place.

Stay in tune with yourself and document your progress, as you pave the way for others who may be following in your footsteps.

It’s no accident you’ve faced the challenges that you have encountered in your past. No matter how you came through that circumstance, you made it here, and your story beckons to be told to others who are treacherously approaching a challenge, like the one you had to endure.

This is your time, this is your moment, take charge, inspire or help someone else.

Your experience might save someone’s life.

Why Do Bad Things Happen to Good People?

Ever wonder why do bad things happen to good people?


It seems like the people who would otherwise deserve to have only the best things in life, because if anyone was deserving of it, these people would be, they’re courteous, kind, loving, giving, even self-sacrificing, always more concerned about the greater good.

Yet, sure enough, when the cards of life are dealt, they appear to suffer injustices in spades. Why does it appear like that?

A common response is, “God only gives us what we can handle,” with an underlying supposition, something to the effect of, “So, God must think I am,” (or some other good person is), “stronger than Superman!” As if the hardest of times visits the most powerful and superior candidates.

In the search for truth, one might ask, “Do bad things happen to good people?”

The answer is, “Yes. Bad things happen to good people.” Therefore, it is true, bad things do happen to good people, but as much as this is true, other antithetical truths also prevail. Just as “What goes up must come down,” and, “The quickest route between two point is a straight line,” are both truth, other truths exist that are contrary to those truths also.

That being said, here are some alternative truths to consider in regards to bad things happening to good people:

  • Bad things happen to all people
  • Random things happen, at random times, involving random people
  • Some people attract circumstances unconsciously on purpose
  • Some (bad) things must occur to further a grander purpose, or lead to evolution
  • Bad things are not bad

Bad things happen to all people

Negative circumstances are not respecters of persons. It doesn’t matter what kind of person you are, if you were on the maiden voyage of the Titanic, you dealt with the same circumstance as everyone else on that trip, whether you were a good person or a bad person. This includes random accidents, acts of violence and natural disasters.

Random things happen, at random times, involving random people

The common colloquialism is simply, “Shit Happens.” And indeed it does. Random things happen, that may well be part of some kind of domino or butterfly effect. Nonetheless, where such things intersect with a particular human being, could be a coincidence.

Some people attract circumstances unconsciously on purpose

According to the Law of Attraction, that which you focus on increases. That means, if you intensely focus on being wronged, you are likely to attract more being wronged. In this scenario, good people could (unbeknownst to themselves) attract more bad circumstances by focusing on their being the victim of an injustice.

Some (bad) things must occur to further a grander purpose, or lead to evolution

Sometimes in life, bad things happen to good people who can use their unfortunate experience to have empathy and offer support to others who have suffered a similar wrongness, change a paradigm (either from within themselves or even the community at large), leading to transformation or evolution and making the world a better place.

Bad things are not bad

Then there is the less popular truism, “There are no bad things.” This is the idea that all things – even if their intention was bad or to cause harm – was actually just the opposite. This is where I like to hang my hat because based on my experience all of the things I have experienced that were less than my best, wrong, full of bad intentions or meant for evil (even with the highst degree of malice and forethought) have all actually been the best things in my life.

These were the moments that forced me to change direction radically, which was painful at the time, but has always led me in another direction or furthered my personal revelation or enlightenment.

So, let me ask you
Why do bad things happen to good people?

My Life Has Been So Awful

Ever have those debilitating thoughts that keep you from pursuing an enormously successful life? You might have resigned yourself to recite the mantra, “Life sucks,” ad infinitum or may have heard the thought inside your head,

“My life is so awful, I could never amount to anything”


Have you suffered what seem to be insurmountable life circumstances that prevent you from being able to have the success you desire?

Let me propose to you that inside every adversity and substantial life challenge there is the seed of a brighter future, but it’s up to you to nurture it to see your life flourish either in spite of or as the result of a tragedy or injustice.

For instance,

A three-year-old boy abandoned by his father, as he grew he was moved constantly from town to town, struggling to make ends meet, reading and learning was complicated due to dyslexia and he was unable to complete high school.

A ten-year-old innocent child suffered familial sexual abuse. Unable to cope, she became sexually promiscuous, became pregnant at age 14 and lost her son shortly after giving birth.

A fifteen-year-old girl witnessed her mother shoot and kill her out of control alcoholic father in self-defense.

An eighteen-year-old boy whose father committed suicide following his parents divorce.

A nineteen-year old young woman was given less than a two per cent chance of living when she contracted an infection went into septic shock resulting in amputation of both legs and the loss of her spleen.

A twenty-year-old man with a dream, set out to share his cartoon art only to find himself unable to support himself became homeless, found a friend in an equally lonely rodent, showered at the train station at was forced to file bankruptcy.

A 25-year old burgeoning drug dealer was arrested at the Kalamazoo airport with over 650 grams of cocaine and promptly sent to prison.

A 28-year-old man burned over 65% of his body in a motorcycle accident, and if that wasn’t bad enough, four years later was involved in an airplane crash that left him paralyzed from the waist down due to spinal injuries.

There is no doubt these people represent those of us who face challenges that make us feel unworthy of accomplishing much at all, due to what might appear to be insurmountable circumstances.

Yet, even faced with such adversity, as these people were, they turned their hardships into the fuel that would lead to living lives that inspire as the rest of us admire them for the people they have become.

keanu-reevesThat three-year old boy became a well-known actor, producer, director and musician. You might remember Keanu Reeves from Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure, The Matrix, or any of the other films which have contributed to his notoriety.

oprah-winfreyThe ten-year-old sexual abuse survivor grew up to be a talk show host, actress, producer, publisher, owner of her own television network and philanthropist, Oprah Winfrey, the wealthiest African-American in the 20th century.

charlize-theronThe fifteen-year-old girl who witnessed the murder of her father by her mother is a South African and American actress and film producer. Charlize Theron has received acclaim for her work as well as recipient of the Academy Award, Silver Bear, Golden Globe Award and Screen Actors Guild Awards.

larry-birdThe eighteen-year-old boy whose father committed suicide following his parents’ divorce turned his attention toward sports and ended up playing for the Boston Celtics. Larry Bird is a 12-time NBA All-Star, won the gold medal at the 1992 Summer Olympics and currently serves as team president of the Indiana Pacers.

amy-purdyThe nineteen-year old who lost her legs is an American actress, model, world-class snowboarder and 2014 Paralympic bronze medalist, co-founder of Adaptive Action Sports, professional motivational speaker, clothing designer and author, Amy Purdy.

walt-disneyThe twenty-year-old bankrupt cartoonist who befriended a mouse was entrepreneur, animator, voice actor and film producer, Walt Disney won twenty-two Oscars, two Golden Globe Special Achievement Awards and an Emmy Award, among other honors. As well as founding Disneyland, Disney World and EPCOT (Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow).

tim-allenThe 25-year old imprisoned drug dealer survived his prison sentence using humor as his coping mechanism. Following his release, he tried standup comedy on a dare, and developed his “toolman” persona based on personalities of other prison inmate personalities. Actor and comedian, Tim Allen is best-known for his ABC television show Home Improvement and has enjoyed success during his Hollywood film career.

w-mitchell28-year-old man with the worst luck of all became known as W Mitchell, an American motivational speaker and businessman. He lives in Santa Barbara, California and maintains a second home in Hawaii, is a millionaire, former member of the United States Marine Corps, a paraplegic, and was elected mayor.

… And you think you had it bad.

What’s your excuse?


There is treasure in your tragedy

only you have the key

It’s time you started to turn your adversity into the fuel to empower you to live a better life, your best life and make the world a better place.