There is light in the darkness. The bible speaks to this…the light shines but we don’t understand.
Sunday was an emotional day- the 3 year anniversary of my son’s passing. My son Fisher actually passed on Dec. 10 but on Dec. 11 is the day we celebrate his life and commemorate his memory as this was the day Heather delivered him. Back in 2008, when we found out he had passed on Dec 10 we went straight over to Swedish and Heather was given an IV of pitocin and labored through the night and she delivered our still born son on the morning of Dec. 11. That is a night I’ll never forget. It was the darkest night of my life. And yet, there was a light. We clung to one another. We clung to Christ. Friends came and cried with us. And prayed with us. There was light in the darkness.
This last Sunday, I was feeling beat up. Sad and confused, emotions too raw to label just under the surface like a hurricane. After church, the kids had play dates and while our little one slept, Heather went to the memorial of the baby I wrote about in Part 1. In the quiet of the house, I picked up my guitar for the first time in a long time. And I began to sing.
I’ll spare you the words but it was my raw words and emotions- the poetry of my soul- that I sang out as I strummed to God. And the words brought tears and the tears brought a chorus: “Lord-Its not fair! No Its not Fair!” I told God I didn’t think it was fair that my son died, that my family turned out different than I had planned, that at times we still suffer. That we are stained by grief. And the occasional tear turned to more tears which turned into deep sobs of grief from my chest. I cried harder than I had in a very long time. And I cried out to God. God- this isn’t fair!
And then a peace broke. No-Its not fair. God doesn’t operate by our worldly system of fairness. But in a peaceful way, I realized I’m lucky God isn’t fair. That God doesn’t judge me in a perfectly FAIR and BALANCED way because I have screwed up so much in my life I’d never be worth. This was the story of the OT. The system of purity (i.e. FAIRNESS) never worked because the nation of Israel was just too…human.
No God isn’t fair with us. He is merciful and forgiving and loving and showers us with His grace. And yes, sometimes He hurts for us too. God doesn’t will us to hurt. He didn’t kill my son Fisher. He doesn’t strike people down to “test” us or do “some greater good.” We live in a world that God loved so much that He instilled us a sense of freedom to choose our own decisions. The resulting mess and chaos of the world leaves a lot of questions unanswered. But God isn’t to blame every time we hurt.
And yet…He hurts for us. He hurts with us. And He is big enough that He allows us to question Him in our pain. I preached about this a few weeks back but the reality of this truth shouldn’t elude us: We are allowed to be mad at God. We are allowed to be disappointed and bring that to God. God is big enough to hear us when we’re mad or sad or whatever.
Want evidence its okay to be real with God? Just think of Jesus on the cross. In His last hour as Jesus was suffering He cries out, “God why have you forsaken me?”
I remember reading that as a new Christian for the first time when I was 18 and didn’t believe somebody hadn’t edited that part of the bible. “Doesn’t that show Jesus doubting God?” I asked a bible teacher of mine in College.
“No, this isn’t doubt. At the moment of Jesus’ darkest night- He is turning His doubts and fears directly to God Himself. This isn’t doubt. This is the very essence of faith. “
We can love completely without complete understanding. The light shines in the darkness. This is the story of Job, the story of the nation of Israel, the story of Jesus Himself. The bible doesn’t promise a pain free existence. It promises a relationship with the Creator God who made us in His image, who sent His son- Jesus Christ- to be a Light in our darkness and re-install us as God’s children. It promises that the Holy Spirit will be with us and in us and through us so that we’ll never walk alone. Even when life is dark, we’ll never walk alone. It isn’t always fair, but it is always good. God is always good.
This video is 12 minutes long but worth watching. Sometimes in our great hurt we need to rage against God- but in the book of Job, God responds. Your story is not over. Watch and find out more.