“So much to say and nothing at all. My thoughts drifting down like leaves in the fall…”
I have wanted to pick up my pen many times over the last month. So many thoughts running through my head. None of them seemed to be coming together in a way I would want to share with those kind enough to read my posts. Today is no different from the others, yet I feel compelled to try to bring sense to some of what has been on my heart and trust God with the rest.
As I have sought to write about the hope I have in my Jesus it fascinates me that everything in my life and the life of those I love seems to be pointing directly away from this hope I proclaim. My life has known many difficult seasons but never one so overflowing with tragedy as the one of late.
Death, cancer, loss, finances, physical pain, illness, politics, relational struggles……The list goes on and on. If I’m not touched by these hardships, someone I love is.
Hope wanes. Sorrow is heavy. Pain is a burden.
How do I share hope when I’m struggling to see it? How do I encourage when I need encouragement? I find myself on my face again crying out to God. He meets me there as He always does and as I pour out all that wounds He lifts my head and I cry out again. This time with praise. A time of mourning transformed into a time of worship.
The promises of my King pierce the darkness and I remember hope. Or truer still, hope remembers me and I am made new. It is here I see that the trials don’t point me away from Jesus, they point me to Him. What would seem to divide is actually a place of sweet union. What seems hopeless is actually a place with the promise of renewal as our God makes all things new in the perfect timing of His love.
Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us. Romans 5:35 ESV
This is not to suggest that the grief is gone, circumstances changed or that a single second of this is easy. On the contrary. Rather it is about the fact that hope and pain are not independent of each other. They are not realities that refuse to be reconciled. The moments of my deepest sorrows have often been intermingled with times of my sweetest joy as I walk with Jesus through my suffering.
Jesus holds you in the dark of the night when all seems lost and your thoughts betray you. He hears you when your tears pour from the injustice of it all. He sees these babies left behind, precious ones lost, your friend growing weaker by the day. He stands with you in the uncertainty of this election, when you are waiting for your test results and when your marriage is struggling to hang on. He hears you when the one you held when they were new is now an adult turning their back on God. He loves you when you rage against Him or believe that there is no God at all.
Dear one, trust Him in your pain. Praise Him in your heartache. Take His hand as you walk through the fire. Or maybe it is time to stop rejecting Him and running from Him and give yourself into His care.
He is worthy. He is able. He is willing. He is good.
He will never leave you or forsake you.
Jesus came for you. Jesus died for you. Jesus rose again for you. Jesus is coming back for you.
It is beautiful to sing His praise from the top of the mountain, but it is glory to sing to Him in the darkness of the valley. May you walk with Him there sweet one, as He brings Honey from the Stone.