Sunday, January 23, 2011

Though the fig tree should not blossom, nor fruit be on the vines,
the produce of the olive fail and the fields yield no food,
the flock be cut off from the fold and there be no herd in the stalls,
yet I will rejoice in the Lord;
I will take joy in the God of my salvation.
Habakkuk 3:17-18

This week has been a difficult one. I was reading this passage earlier this week, before I learned of the news that a precious lady on staff at my church had unexpectedly died. I have read it several more times since then. If I am honest, I will tell you that I have been having a difficult time with the message of these verses.

No matter what happens, Lord, I will trust You.

I have been asking myself whether I really believe that. I mean, sure...I want to say with an emphatic Yes! that I trust the Lord regardless of the circumstances. But if I am honest, if I look at my life over the past year, I must admit that it has been a struggle. I have struggled to trust the Lord in the face of the "no matter whats". It has been difficult to trust Him with the suffering and deaths of so many precious children that I have taken care of over the past year...Difficult to trust Him in the process of trying to sell my house and the long waiting season with regard to Peru...Difficult to trust in His Goodness in the midst of the deaths of so many around me in the past months.

Becka Mullennix is the name of the precious lady that died this week. She was the Hospitality coordinator at Grace, and I used to serve under her leadership as a volunteer on Sunday mornings. That is where I first met her. Since then, I have seen her week after week running around in the lobby of Grace on Sundays. She always had a smile and would usually greet me with a hug. She often asked me about how Peru plans were coming along. I will miss those smiles and hugs, and if her Facebook wall is any indication, she will be dearly missed by hundreds of people. Her memorial service on Saturday was a testimony to the way that she loved people so well. I am sad that she is gone.

Circumstances like this cause me to long for the Kingdom to come and for the Earth to be restored to the way that God intended it to be. Our pastors at Grace reminded us of that today - that while we can have hope in the knowledge that Becka is in the presence of the Creator, we can also grieve, knowing that death is not from the Lord. Death is not what God intended for us from the beginning. And one day, this Earth will be restored to the way that it was perfectly created to be, and death will be defeated for good.

In the meantime though, I am learning to be honest with myself and with God. I am being reminded that it is OK to cry out to Him as David did in the Psalms, with questions and raw emotion. I am trying to put my hope in the Truths that I know about the character of God and remember the ways that He has been faithful to me, knowing that He is unchanging. I am asking Him to show me Himself, to remind me of His character. I am thankful for the encouragement of His Word:

He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will abide in the shadow of the Almighty. Psalm 91:1

But this I call to mind, and therefore I have hope: The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. Lamentations 3: 21-23

1 comment:

Caroline said...

I love you, friend!