Hi Virella, interesting post. I go to church pretty much every week, i'm involved in leading the 11-14s youth group there and, like your friend, i would call myself a christian but i woudln't say i'm religious.
As a Christian, i firmly believe that faith in Jesus is the only way to ever be saved. However, this does not mean that i'll always be happy and that life will be great. It doesn't say anywhere in the bible that this will be the case and it's certainly not my expereince of life
I'd certainly recommned going along to your friend's church to see what it's like and maybe try getting yourself to an ALPHA course if you want to know what it's all about. I believe they even have one session on why God allows suffering. My understanding of the suffering question is quite simply that when God created man, He gave us free will to choose. On a very
simple level, we can choose whether we behave in a way which upsets Him (sin) or not, and in allowing us this choice, He allows us to destroy His creation. I could go into it further but i'm aware that i'm voicing my personal views here and that these may well upset some other users so i'll stop there. If you want to know more, please ask questions or PM me. I make no apologies for saying what I believe to be truth but i also don't seek to get into any arguments with people as i realise that others may have different beliefs. Please can this post not turn into an anti-religion rant anywhere. As already stated, I am Christian, i am NOT religious (as anyone who knows me would tell you