It’s been a hard week for some. It’s been an exciting week for others. It’s been a roller coaster week for many of us. Do you like roller coasters? The anticipation as you’re going up the steepest hill…the breath you take as you’re about to crest the top…do you brace yourself and grit your teeth or do you lift your arms and enjoy the ride? I admit that I just hunker down and “get through” rollercoasters. When we would get the pictures after the ride at the kiosk, other people were smiling and having a great time, but me, I was head down just trying to hold on for dear life.
Some of us have been white-knuckled as we watch the news. Some of us have longed to see this change. Some of us are wondering how it will affect us. Others of us are wondering how it will affect our neighbors. No matter where we are in this rollercoaster of life, we know God is with us. Deuteronomy 31:6 is one of the scriptures which minister to me at times like this. “6 Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.” The NRSV translation translates “courageous” into “bold.” Be courageous. Be bold. Let your light shine before others no matter the circumstance. It’s easy when everything is going right. It’s easy when everything is falling into place. It’s easy when you feel God’s presence guiding and leading you and you feel that you’re in God’s perfect will.
But what about when you feel God is silent? When you feel like God has forsaken you? When you feel alone and rejected? When you feel despondent and shattered? In the Psalms you can find an abundance of people crying out to God. Particularly Psalm 139 when it asks, “Where can I flee from your presence?” Or one of my favorite pieces of scriptures ever, Romans 8:38-39, “38 For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor rulers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, 39 nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.” I’m not sure why God allows things to happen, but a little earlier in Romans 8 verse 28 says, “28 And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.” I choose to trust. I choose to believe. I choose to hope. I choose to love. I continue to choose the light even on the darkest days because I don’t want my default or resting mode to be bitterness, judgement, or hate, but I want to radiate joy, love and grace. I want to be a Micah 6:8 person. “He has told you, O mortal, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?” This week has been tough; but God is with us. Changing us, transforming us, hearing us, pushing us, comforting us, WITH us.