I’m catching on to the fact that life is hard.
In fact, it is so difficult at times, I start to question God’s wisdom in all of this.
I mean, come on. Here we are, running around on this earth, trying our best not to get devastated by some awful thing. You may say you don’t fear, and I say if that is you, you may be in denial.
People are afraid.
And they want to know what they are supposed to do with all of the stress and turmoil. They want to know how they can possibly find any hope as they look around at the loneliness and despair. They try to find solace in their marriage, or children or hobbies, but mostly, they distract themselves from the thought that at any moment the rug could get ripped out from under them. At any moment their world can turn upside down and their lives can shatter into a million pieces at the blink of an eye.
I have friends who are struggling. Huge, devastating things are looming. And there seems to be no end in sight.
It makes me angry. Don’t tell me to think positive or give me answers that are only meant to smooth over my fears. False hope. Because none of it makes sense.
WHY? WHY DOES IT HAVE TO BE SO HARD? And then I cry bitter tears because I hear no answer. And nothing changes for the better. And all I hear is silence — and I save the sobs caught in my throat.
The other day, my adult son told me he felt afraid.
The air was instantly sucked out of me. I felt so sad. I wanted to minimize his feelings because the thought of my child, the child I brought into this world, facing their future with trepidation, made me want to weep. This is the child, who for the most part has had more happy days than sad, and whose smile lights up a room. And now he is fearful and without find peace?
I asked myself, “What did I do, bringing my son into this dark place?”
Then I thought of God. My God. The One who is a Father, and who loves purer and deeper and truer than me. In fact, He is the definition of love. And I wondered how He was able to bring His Son to this wretched place?
And then I told myself the things I know.
I don’t worship some far away God who is far removed from my pain. I don’t worship a concept, an ideology, or a human leader.
I try not to worship anything more than Him, and that includes my children, my marriage or myself. I worship a God who is near. He didn’t just drop me on this planet to suffer and struggle and walk away. He didn’t put me here to be “good” or “amazing” or “well behaved.” He planned me, and He had my rescue in mind before I was even born. Before I ever messed up and made a disaster of my life. He made a way.
I am His daughter, and He cares about my pain.
He listens when I cry in the shower while I tell Him I don’t understand tragedy, cancer, and divorce. I don’t know why things have to feel so random and cruel. I hate death. It is a breaking of love. I don’t want my family taken from me. It isn’t the “circle of life.” It sucks and I hate it. It feels terrible.
But He knows cruel.
He knows tragedy.
He hears me and intercedes for me.
And He hates death so much, He killed it.
He defeated that nasty beast so we don’t have to be afraid of it.
God the Father, saw this dark world and sent His Son straight into it. He knew what His child would go through, and He sent His precious child anyway. That child was born in a lowly, unsafe place, to parents who had little to offer by the world’s standards. He grew into a man, and he watched his friends and his family suffer. He wrapped his arms around humanity in their worst moments. The sick, the lonely, the rejected. He looked into their eyes and He spoke kindness and truth.
I tend to forget He had a mother.
And what excruciating pain took place the day He left her? She must have looked so frightened as she clung to her boy…but He endured it for us, and if anyone can understand our pain, He can. So when I grieve when I see my children hurt, I know He also walked that road. There is really nothing I experience that He can’t understand.
If He hadn’t suffered so greatly, I would be too angry to even cope.
I might just freak out and give up. But I have never walked the painful road He walked, and I never will. So we can keep going towards the joy set before us. Yes, there is still silence, and unanswered prayers. And many things make no sense to me. But I can’t help but rest knowing He is right here with us.
He didn’t stay far away. He gave us Himself so we could touch him, feast with Him, be held by Him, and we will one day rejoice with Him on the other side of this dark world.