It seems such a small thing to write a weekly blog. You would think that anyone who loves to write, who joys over words, whose morning walks in the garden and time in the Word brims over of life would have no problem doing so. I should be able to sit right down and push “publish”. (I have written three the last three weeks–but didn’t “send”.)
I consider your journey and where you are in life; I want consistently to bring encouragement into lives that are aching, questioning. I desire to gift you with a bit of peace and promise and hope– into these days of chaos and uncertainly.
How can I provide that for you when the conflict to stay sane and insecure on this roller coaster of intense pain and suffering is real on my journey. I wonder if I should hear or watch the news. I want to play it safe, to live in a cocoon, oblivious to the dilemma in the days. But I cannot; that is not reality.
It is a struggle for me to rest secure, to “feel” safe when recent news causes sadness most mornings : the family murdered in the mansion in the Washington D.C . area; the small plane crash enroute to a graduation, killing all on board, the beautiful prom queen drowning near her home. Just last week a soon to be grandmother whose sister is a member of our church was killed in a motorcycle accident. A three week old baby girl whose father is an employee of a member in the church died five days ago.
This past week two precious ladies in the church received devastating diagnosis and prognosis concerning health situations. The deaths of nine believers in a sweet congregation in Charleston caused such sadness–even anger.
How do we respond? What do we say when the journey is rough, looking more like an ocean storm with billowing waves than a quiet way to be walked?
And I am supposed to be happy?
I cannot be. Happiness is a variable contingent on our circumstances. And there are times when we just cant be happy. And you cant, either, when you are walking through painful sad places on the journey. We are not promised happiness. . .
. . .oh, but the joy we are promised! Joy in the Lord is a constant, based on the relationship we have with Jesus Christ. Peace and joy are gifts we as Christians are granted to walk this journey. Joy is peace dancing and peace is joy resting (unknown author)
I cannot be happy as Tom continues to endure his physical pain–but soon, we hope it will be gone. Nor can I be happy as I enter into the heartache and sufferings of others. But I can dance and rest these days because of who He is . . .and what he gives.
Read these words with me from the prophet Habakkuk who was not at all happy at what was coming to his nation of Israel:
“Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls———
YET, I will rejoice in the Lord. I will be joyful in God my Savior. The Sovereign Lord is my strength; he makes my feet like the feet of a deer, he enables me to go on the heights—–” (3:17-19)
And I can dance!