streams in the desert.

Measure your life by loss and not by gain,

Not by the wine drunk, but by the wine poured forth.

For love’s strength is found in love’s sacrifice,

And he who suffers has more to give.

I recently read this comforting quote.

Comforting you say?

Yes.

We react, resist, and resent pain and suffering. And so we should. No one should like it, as if embracing it makes you more acceptable to God.

We are accepted through His suffering and His ultimate victory over death.

But in that deep and dark abyss of pain, that is where I saw God. He showed me things there. It made me feel pulled away from the normal conversations of the day. The kind that seemed so trivial to me.

People call it grieving and it is. But that entails more than sadness. People will accept you need time. They are not always ready for the translucent wall being mysteriously built between you and them.

Some will talk behind your back. This kind of thing only plunged me deeper into suffering because what I saw they did not see.

And I knew they would not listen.

But it was alright. Because God was in that farthest place from human understanding with me. It was alright they didn’t understand. How could they?

Where can I go from your Spirit?

Where can I flee from your presence?

If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.

If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea,

even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast.

If I say, “Surely the darkness will hide me and the light become night around me,”

If I say, “Surely the darkness will hide me and the light become night around me,”

even the darkness will not be dark to you;

the night will shine like the day, for darkness is as light to you.

Psalm 139

Oh, how I remember teaching  wide-eyed children sitting cross-legged on the floor in Sunday School – God is everywhere! You could fly to outer space and He is there! You could go to the deepest ocean and He is still there! We could never go anywhere without Him being there.

But here? In such pain and suffering?

Yes.

And He who suffers has more to give.

DSC_0962

~~~

Streams in the Desert; p. 384, Zondervan, 1997

Photo credit: Lapatia via Foter.com / CC BY

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