I was able to make it to church this past Sunday. I knew it would be good for my kids, if not me as well. The sermon was about worshiping God in all circumstances. “All circumstances” takes on a new meaning for me these days. But, I can say that I’ve never wanted to declare God’s goodness more in these days than ever before. I can’t quite explain it, but rather than be convinced that God is bad or evil – as some might expect – I’m only convinced more and more how good He really is, and how kind He is to us.
One of the songs we sang at the funeral service was “You Alone” by The David Crowder Band. It says, “You alone are Father, and you alone are good. You alone are Savior, and you alone are God.” I had requested this song, actually, because it is such a simple proclamation of God being good.
It’s hard, of course, to always see how this could be a good situation, but I have to keep looking outside my own life. Just because it’s not a good situation for me doesn’t mean that it’s not a good situation (either for others, or at least for God). It sucks. It sucks real bad. And I hate it. But God is good and that gives me such comfort. I know He has plans for me, and those plans are for my good and to prosper me (Jeremiah 29:11), but it’s just going to be some time before I see that.
I remember one night in college that was a particularly horrible night for me. I was up all night crying and praying and aching and hurting. I couldn’t understand how things had gotten so bad for me, but even a year later I saw how incredibly God was using that night for my good and His glory. (I think it was even days later that I started to see some of that.)
The analogy is always made to human parents and children. We love our kids and tell them “no” sometimes or bring things into their lives that they don’t necessarily like, but we are looking at the bigger picture and we are shaping them so they will be successful as adults, even if they don’t like it as a 3-year-old. We’re the 3-year-old and God is our Father. I know God is going to use this for my good, and that’s why I am fully convinced that God is good. The book of James talks about difficult situations helping us to mature, so I praise God for His goodness to think I deserve His instruction and guidance towards maturity.
As I type this, it almost sounds like lip service, but I’ve never felt so convinced of anything in my life. I’m not saying it’s easy, and I definitely don’t want this, but I keep trying to live in the moment while also looking to the future and how this can make me more like Christ. I hope it comes soon.