Do you know what I hear a lot that makes me want to scream?
"Everything happens for a reason."
When someone says that, it is usually the most ridiculously wrong time to assert my belief that, "Nah, they don't. Maybe some things, but not everything." The sayer has likely experienced a setback or tragedy or difficult time and is trying to find solace through her faith that God is the master puppeteer, orchestrating our daily interactions, choices and consequences of every little thing that goes down on this here planet.
When I hear an LDS person say that, I get especially frustrated. Doesn't that idea fly in the face of our doctrine? Have we been paying attention during General Conference, or haven't we?
Sure. God can and perhaps very frequently does intervene on our behalf. The power of prayer is real and miracles happen all the time. There are always opportunities for growth and learning and exercising of faith when bad things happen, but does that mean the bad thing happened because specifically so we could have that test or trial of faith or growth experience? I don't believe it. Some things happen, just because they do.
There is (at least) one experience in my life that I can directly attribute to the Hand of the Lord and I believe that will all my heart. There are countless other times when prayers have been answered and I have have been aware that the Lord has been aware and mindful of me. But I do not subscribe to the school of thought that Everything Happens For A Reason. And I'm fairly confident I could find a giant pile of church literature to back me up on this.
What think ye?