By Lacey Gustavsen
Sometimes, life goes by, and new moments amaze us every day. We see God in everything we do, wherever it is that we find ourselves. We feel his presence close by, nearer than our next breath. Even when difficult circumstances come during these times, we trust God. He shows up in miraculous ways; in ravens coming to feed us, in raising the dead to life, and in consuming fire.
In these moments, we declare him “Lord,” and say that he is good, and full of love for us.
Sometimes, however, life is not good. Sometimes, it’s a losing battle just to crawl out from under the covers in the morning. Sometimes, the words someone speaks, or doesn’t speak, hit a fracture point in our hearts, and we’re left bleeding out on the floor, desperately trying to reassemble the pieces. We scream out to God for help, comfort, understanding, anything, and yet perceive that he is silent.
In these cold, empty, broken moments, we forget everything we ever knew of God, and say that he doesn’t care, doesn’t see, or is simply indifferent to our pain.
I wonder how much this must break God’s heart, to see our profound lack of faith in him.
He never promised us an easy road, with comfortable rest stops along the way. He did say, however, that the road he called us on would be hard. It would be narrow, winding, steep, and difficult. And along that whole road, we would be carrying an old wooden cross. This paints a different, rather bleak picture of what our walk looks like.
He promises us something else, as well. He promises to walk along that road with us, to guide us, to pick us up when we fall. This should give us incredible courage and strength. By ourselves, we stare up the steep slope of circumstance, and see only the angle of the hill, the thorns that line its sides, and the darkness that encroaches all around. With him by our side, we still see all of this, but with courage, we are able to turn to the darkness, and sing hope into the night, and at last see dawn break over the hill.
I can almost hear what God must be saying when we think he’s abandoned us.
“Abandoned you? My child, don’t you see? I was never more than a step away. To abandon you would be to contradict my very essence, my being. I am faithful, and I do not change. When words sliced through you, and left you raw and bleeding, I was there, putting my palms over the wounds to slow the bleeding.
“When your heart shattered, I was there, among the wreckage, starting to rebuild. Instead of focusing on me, you focused on the pool of blood you saw on the floor, and on the way that you wanted to put your heart together. You tried to take control, forgetting that I only want what is best.
“Then, you say that because you’ve fallen, and failed, I must love you less. You know so little, my child! Nothing, absolutely nothing in this entire world that you have done, or are doing, or will do, will make me love you any less. You are mine, bought by the precious blood of my Son, Jesus, holy and righteous in my sight.
“When you fall, I will pick you up again. When your world turns upside down, I will be there to set it right. When you cry, I will be there to wipe the tears away. And when you finally reach the end of the road I have placed you on, I will be there to welcome you into the place that is your home, that I have prepared for you since before time began.”
If we truly understood this to be the heart of God, I think that we would be much less concerned with our circumstances, and we would instead be full of thanksgiving. No matter where we are at, he is there with us.
This should be an incredible source of comfort to those that call themselves his people. We should be the most joyful, thankful people in the world, once we have actually grasped hold of this truth. When our joy is then on display for the world to see, we will be markedly different from the world in which we live. Then, perhaps, the world will take a look at the good news of the King’s domain, when we, the children of the King, begin to live in the hope to which he has called us.
Lacey is a writer from Calgary, Alberta Canada. She uses her writing to show people the amazing wonder of God.