Circumstances do not change the character of God, they REVEAL it!
A loving, intentional, faithful God does not suddenly become a disinterested, absent Father because our life seems to be falling apart all around us. Hardships in this life uncover the depth of God’s character to His children in a fresh way. It is one thing to study and memorize Scripture; to sit in classes discussing the attributes of God.
Oh but friends, it is an entirely transforming experience to have His promises come align themselves with you in the whirlwind of a crisis.
When He sends whispers of His love to minister to you in the exact spot of the surreal, horror-filled paralysis that you are in…well, there is simply nothing like it.
God is love.
When Tim was only a few months into his cancer battle, we received the news that a woman we both respected and loved was entering her own battle against this ugly beast. Today, I attended her funeral in the very same sanctuary where a little over 4 months ago, we held Tim’s service.
Walking through those doors again rocked me in ways I did not expect. New waves of grief washed over me and filled my eyes with fresh tears, as I simply tried to get through the door and find a seat before my legs gave way. Feeling each step rattle deep within my heart as I walked the very aisle I had traveled flanked by our children for their Daddy’s service.
God washed over me with His peace and reminded me that He is faithful. He is a God who never once leaves us on our own to walk the path He sets before us.
Watching my dear, beautiful, friend of 35+ years walk that aisle with her Dad and brother and all of their family today broke my heart. I hate that her family is enduring the pain of losing someone who was truly so radiant with the love of Christ, so joyful in affliction, and such a godly example of a wife and mother.
Today has caused me to reflect back on God’s intentional loving and faithful ways, both to my own family and to the Wagnon family over the years. While it is true that my heart is broken for my friend, I also rejoice that she and her family know a depth of God’s character reserved for those who suffer such great loss.
We share a knowledge of our God’s character throughout the treacherous cancer, hospital, chemotherapy, “think we've got all the cancer”, “oh no it’s back”, and hospice days. We are forever united in the revelation of God never being absent or disinterested in our pleas for help.
Scripture repeatedly instructs us that God is for us and we are not to fear; to walk along side one who knows they are dying and yet rejoices in their eternity to come...it places these promises on a whole new level of reality. Though our grief is different (I have not lost a parent and she has not lost a spouse to death), our reliance on God is the same.
He is good. He loves. He is faithful.
We know these things on a level that goes much deeper than memorized Scripture and group Bible studies. Our Lord and Savior has walked beside us, He has been our shield, our glory, and the lifter of our head (Psalm 3:3). He carries our burdens every day (Psalm 68:19). God sees all of our hardships and cares about our suffering (Psalm 31:7).
Our great and mighty God’s character has been revealed and He will not let us fall, for He is watching over us day and night. (Psalm 121:3)