Sitting down to write today for our church newsletter, I had a different plan. But as with most things we plan, God has shifted my direction.
In the last weeks our community has endured tremendous, unexpected, painful loss. The kind you’re never prepared for. The kind that knocks the breath right out of your lungs and makes you feel like solid footing is nowhere in sight.
If I’m being honest, it’s also the kind that can make you question where God is in all of it. Again, if I’m being honest, I’ve sat here this morning asking God that very question. And his soft answer to my questioning: “Here”.
This world doesn’t offer a softer landing for those that choose Jesus. We don’t get some magical protection that keeps the bad from happening. And sometimes, in the hardest times, the thread that we cling to is that God is here. Not to make sense of it all. Because sometimes you just can’t. Not sweep the hurt and pain away. Because those don’t just disappear.
God is here in the hope we have in our grief. When we lose someone who follows Jesus, the hope of that heavenly reunion is the greatest hope we can have. God is here in peace that just doesn’t make sense when all we see around us is ashes. God is here in the family, friends and community that show up and circle the wagons and make sure you know you’re not alone.
It’s a struggle to find God in the depths of tragedy when the only way I’m looking for him is to just take the tragedy away. But if I’m honest, God is here. He’s here in His people who become Jesus with skin on when the world gets turned on its ear. He’s not only here, He’s close. When our hearts are overwhelmed, lead us to the cross.
“The Lord is close to the brokenhearted. He rescues those whose spirits are crushed.” Psalm 34:18