Jon for President!!

Where was God when my loved one died?

Sooner or later, anyone who ever loved has lost a loved one.  And it hurts!  How can it be otherwise?  And it is at these times, when our religion, our philosophy, our paradigms, our optimism, our whatever, are tested by the fiery trials of life, that what is false is burned away, and what is real is what we’re left with.  Many have thought that they had it all together, only to be devastated by a death, or a divorce, or a betrayal.

Were was God when my love one died?  There is a concise answer to this question:  “He’s right where you left Him.”  And however true that might be, we would never throw that in the face of someone hurting and helpless.  It’s too cold.  But if we could say the same thing in kinder words, we would.  God is “the God of all comfort.”  But if we only want Him in our lives when we’re in trouble, we may be disappointed because we have failed to build a relationship.  Who’s the first one you’d call in a time of desperate need?  The friend you haven’t seen in 20 years, or the friend you had dinner with last night?
And this is the tragedy.  It’s not that we always have to work at maintaining our fellowship with God. Rather it is the desire of the Creator of the Universe to have fellowship with us. The same is true of the rest of the Trinity. Somehow we haven’t caught the hint.  Jesus came to earth to set us straight about what God wants.  But he did not come to back us into a corner to tell us off.  He came because of God’s love for us (John 3:16) and because He desires our salvation.

The Holy Spirit lives in every Christian.  But not so that we can get a supernatural zap when we want it.  He is there as our eternal companion to help us to love God, to obey God, to pray, to increase our knowledge of God, to do everything and be everything that friendship with God requires, and without Whom, true intimacy is impossible. The Bible says “You must be born again.”  (That’s what  “born again” means, to be Spirit born, to be indwelt by the Holy Spirit.)

We all have lived long enough to see the out-working of this.  You may have been at the side of a friend in a time of loss.  They don’t want nifty theological answers; they just want someone to be there, to know this really hurts, and to pray that the pain might not linger. 

It is sad to say, possibly the only people who receive true comfort are believers.  It doesn’t mean much to say, “God cares” to an unbeliever.  They don’t understand.  But with a believer, that is, one who walks daily with the Lord, “God cares”, coming from another believer, makes all the difference in the world.


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