This is what I shall keep in mind and so regain some hope.  Surely, Yahweh’s mercies are not over, his deeds of faithful love not exhausted; every morning
they are renewed; great is his faithfulness. Lamentations  3: 21-23

The phrase “faithful love” appears frequently in the Bible, especially in the Psalms.
That phrase is a strong reminder that God’s love for us is unchanging.  God’s grace is always and everywhere available.   Reassuring as those words are, we cannot avoid raising the question: how, in fact, is that assurance verified?  Sometimes our experience makes it difficult to recognize that truth.

That passage from Lamentations  reflects one of the greatest paradoxes of Christianity, namely, God as loving and the fact of suffering.  Certainly, there are instances when God’s love is difficult to recognize.  It can remain hidden behind events which tempt us to question his power, his concern, if not his very existence.  A fictional conversation illustrates that idea:  A person says, “If God wants us to believe he had better give some evidence.  The second replies, “That he exists?” The first responds, “No, that he cares.”

In the face of suffering people are often encouraged “to offer it up.”  In fact, that has become a cliché, so often repeated there is a danger of overlooking the deeper meaning of the phrase and of simply dismissing it.   The deeper meaning is this: by offering up one’s suffering in union with the suffering of Jesus, a person can become a sharer in the redemptive suffering of Christ.  In his suffering and death on the cross, Jesus not only accomplished our redemption but imbued human suffering
with a totally new value.  In their suffering, persons can become sharers in the redemptive suffering of Christ.

Suffering is at the heart of the central mystery of our faith.  We call it the Pascal Mystery, the mystery of the suffering, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
And that is a question not just of suffering but of unnecessary suffering.  God made unnecessary suffering the very means of our salvation.  Jesus did not need to suffer.   Any act of his could have saved the world.  Why, then, did God choose to save the world through the suffering and death of his own son?   That’s a mystery that has no answer, except in terms of God’s infinite love.  As St. John put it: “God so loved the world that he gave his only son so that everyone who believes may not perish but may have eternal life.” (3: 16)