June 22, 2016
Oh, hello, Blog. It’s me, Hannah. I’ve been away for a bit. Sorry.
I blame summer. Summer tends to steal things, like my schedule. And my children’s bedtimes. And my clean-ish bathroom. And my desire to blog.
But in case you were wondering, we are quite well. And thank you for asking.
Josh is growing a beard stout enough to shame a lumberjack, and I still love him in spite of it. A week or so ago, in honor of 12 years together, we shared an overnight date and a steak the size of a ping pong ball. But the rolls were delicious, so, you know, it was well worth 85 bucks.
And because it’s summer, the kids are happy (most of the time.)
There’s the river.
And there’s a newly discovered box of costumes from the attic.
And, of course, there’s mom’s sudden disregard of bedtime.
Life is lovely when you’re a kid in summer, isn’t it?
Enjoy it while it lasts, kiddos.
Whatever you do, just don’t start watching the news.
Do you feel it too?
That feeling that everything’s horribly screwed up here? That this isn’t how it’s supposed to be? That, dadgummit, why wasn’t I born a few log cabins down from the Ingalls family, with Pa and his fiddle and Ma stirring beans over the fire?
Why am I raising kids now? Here? In this? This mess.
What is going on?
God? Hello? Where are you?
Why don’t you fix this?
And it’s not just the news. You could ignore the news and still feel it.
Families nearby are facing devastating diagnoses and we stand around helpless and broken for them. We send pies and lasagnas because there’s nothing else we can do but pray, and sometimes that just feels small. And the hope we beg God for just feels absent. And the earth just feels shaken.
But we all know.
Just because we feel something doesn’t make it true.
I debated writing this one. (As I often do.) More words, I thought? There are plenty of words out there already, plenty of people who’ve already said it and said it better. Should I say it too? Would it make any difference?
I don’t know.
But I know this: When I start to feel desperate and helpless and like prayer is just some big tease, then I am forgetting who God is.
And that, above all else, that is the most foolish thing I can do at a time like this.
Because God does not change.
His promise to love us and hold us and be our light and our refuge and our strength and to be faithful in times of trouble is still as true to today as it was when God first said, “I the Lord do not change” (Malachi 3:6).
And as a wise friend reminded me a few days ago, God has to be faithful because that’s who He is. In the same way, He has to be good. He has to be merciful. He has to be just.
He cannot, will not, will never change. We have to know who God is. We have to. Our faith will not survive without anchoring itself in Him.
And though that may not always feel true, it doesn’t matter. It is.
Because Jesus is a big deal. “And He is before all things, and in him all things hold together.” (Col. 1:17)
That’s the super-simplified way of saying that Jesus is everything and that everything here is for him and through him and that we exist because of him. Not so that we can live cushy lives in our quaint log cabins and without any troubles. But so we can look at all this awfulness and remember that we are not to love this place. We are to be looking ahead and beyond all this and to remember what Jesus won for us when He died on the cross.
This may not feel true, but it doesn’t matter. It is.
Because faith is grabbing hold, hanging on, and refusing to let go.
If we didn’t cling to Him before, let us cling now. If we didn’t hope for Heaven, let us do so now. If we didn’t pray or if we’ve thought that prayer felt insignificant, let’s call that lie out for what it is.
Because God’s goodness may not feel true, but it is. He doesn’t change.
Because Jesus may not feel like a big deal, but He is. His death gives us hope in all this mess.
Because faith may not seem worthwhile, but it is. God says so.
That’s what we do right now then, friends, when all else seems lost.
We grab hold, hang on, and refuse to let go.
“Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.” (Heb. 10:23)
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