I am suffering today. Suffering alongside a friend. This has been a common and reoccurring theme in our lives over the past couple years. It seems everyone I get close to has been led in to the Valley of the Shadow of Death. And therefore, I am called there too.
I weep as I type this, as I cry out for the Lord’s deliverance. I know He is good, I know He is in control, I know He will never leave us or forsake us. But emotionally I feel as the Psalmist did when he wrote Psalm 77:
“Will the Lord spurn forever, and never again be favorable? Has his steadfast love forever ceased? Are his promises at an end for all time? Has God forgotten to be gracious? Has he in anger shut up his compassion?”
Basically the Psalmist is asking God if He has stopped being a Rescuer and a Comforter?
He knows He hasn’t but it feels like it. As the psalm continues the writer remembers how God worked wonders among his people and redeemed them to himself. Even the waters and the sky trembled at His power though His footprints were unseen. But it was He who “led his people like a flock by the hand of Moses and Aaron.”
How does this comfort the Psalmist? How does this comfort me? How does it comfort the one suffering? How does God reach the heart that is wailing?
From the words of my brother-in-law in his sermon on this passage… God reaches us in our terrifying agony and doubts by wrapping His grace in the mystery of relationship. There are no 7-steps to get through suffering; it only comes in knowing the One who is our Redeemer. We will begin to feel Him move when we remember the truths of who He is.
Our God is the same yesterday, today and forever. What He did for the Israelites, He promises to all HIs children. I don’t understand, I hate the process and I want His will to be mine. But, even in these moments of tremendous suffering, when it is hard to trust, by His grace He enters in. Lord, thank you that even when we feel forsaken, you are still there. That your covenant promises are secured for your children in your Son.
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