Then the Lord answered Job out of the whirlwind: '... Will you even put me in the wrong? Will you condemn me that you may be justified?' Job 40:6, 8
What about the 'Is it fair?' part of my friend's question? It was the sort of question that Job asked God. And the conclusion of that story makes it clear that God respected Job's honesty and sincerity, while at the same time completely demolishing his arguments.
The response to my friend's question (or part of the response) is that again the question can be said to be irrelevant. God is sovereign, and that is that. And if our belief were only in a transcendent Almighty One, aloof and unheeding, we should have to stop there. Yet to many sincere people this just seems not to be enough.
Well, there is something more to say, a very big something, a breath-taking paradox. The God whose ego cannot be expanded can -- and did -- act in the opposite direction. God the Son put aside his glory and made himself of no reputation. He took the form of a servant and was made in human likeness. He humbled himself and became obedient to death -- death on a cross (Phil 2:5-8). All this was to rescue lost mankind. God was in Christ reconciling the world to himself (2 Cor 5:19).
We may still not understand everything. But do we really need or want to ask any more questions? Job said (in effect): 'I give up. I haven't a leg to stand on'. And then came the positive bit, the transforming bit, which meant that Job was never the same again: 'I had heard of thee by the hearing of the ear, but now my eye sees thee' (Jb 42:5). Amy Carmichael, who served God for many years in India and was a long-time sufferer from physical pain and disability, has put it in another way: 'Thy Calvary stills all our questions'.
Gracious God, help us to see you clearly and to know that
you are not only a God of infinite power and might, but
a God of infinite wisdom and love.
Further reading: 1 Jn 4:7-21.