God has x-ray vision.
Man does not see what the LORD sees, for man sees what is visible, but the LORD sees the heart.
– The Bible
Have you or someone you love ever been misunderstood or misjudged?
It’s not easy to endure such a thing, but sometimes we must.
There is something comforting in believing God knows the truth. It may be many years before the truth will come out.
Or maybe it will not be revealed until eternity.
I have walked through the valley of the shadow of death. I was sucked into it. It was the most darkest place I’ve ever walked.
Had I not walked through, I would not have known God was with me. I would not have known the comfort of his rod and staff. I would not have known he leads me besides still waters. I would not have known there is no evil to fear.
I would not have really known what God is like at all.
We don’t like pain. We avoid it at all costs – denial, anger, bitterness, self-pity ….
You cannot prevent your birth and you cannot prevent your death. You cannot prevent facing the valley of the shadow of death. You will stand at its entrance.
Walk through it. You may be surprised what you find there.
Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.
A paper cut will heal quickly.
A gun shot wound requires more time.
Sometimes the bullet cannot be removed.
People live with bullets inside of them.
People live with broken hearts.
This isn’t hopelessness.
It is acceptance of what is.
Once accepted, you carry grief with strength…
I love working outside in the flower gardens. Every spring I am always amazed to see the tender shoots breaking through the soil once again. If we’re paying attention, the cycles in nature teach us so much. Do you think this is exactly what God had in mind?
Nature reveals who God is.
He has made the earth capable of replenishing after catastrophic events – wildfires, floods, ice storms, fierce winds, and even oil spills. It speaks of God’s redeeming ability. Pain can be likened to such things. With time, even the deepest sorrow can be replenished.
It doesn’t mean life will be the same. It does mean life will go on. The main trunk of my oak sapling died last summer. I was worried since it’s my favorite tree and I had planted it, nurtured it, and protected it. But then I discovered, all around it were small, new shoots. And this spring, they are thriving.
What is it that you have planted, nurtured, and protected? A relationship? Your body? Your job? Only to be discouraged, frustrated, or hurt because of the outcome? Hold on to hope and never give up. Remember, nature teaches us about God’s care. How much more are you important to God?
There is joy and comfort in finding the pleasures and treasures along the way that are given by a good God who cares that you are hurting.
Recently, a young couple and their baby were instantly killed when concrete debris fell from an overpass onto their vehicle.
But there have been similar stories when people have missed such a tragedy by seconds. Those people often say, “God was with me” or “God wasn’t done with me yet”. Wasn’t God with the family who was killed? Was he done with them?
Personally, I have questioned why God didn’t intercept my son’s death. Finally, I had to stop asking something I was never going to get an answer for. I concluded that God knew and that was enough.
Our questions are normal. But at the end of the day, there is something we are trusting in. We turn to drugs, alcohol, food, shopping, television, and more to help us cope. Understandable. But inside, we know these things are band-aids.
One day, a friend asked if she could come talk with me. She cried through a series of serious and tragic situations she was facing with her young adult children. The father was completely out of the picture.
There are no quick fixes with some situations. As a Christian, it’s not the time to say, “God loves you!” or any other scripture. Because that hurting person is not believing God loves him/her at all.
My friend’s life was like a boat in a vicious storm, ready to break into pieces. She was looking for safety.
After listening for some time, I said, “All I can tell you is this: the sun rises every morning and sets every night”.
This is a picture we can all relate to, no matter who you are or where you live. It is the picture of assurance – pointing us to the Creator of the universe – who is sovereign, infinite, all-knowing, and faithful.
Because there are some things we cannot explain with words.