Christ Suffers with Us

Last week was hard. It was one of those weeks that makes you wonder how you even got through it. When we experience tragedy people often feel the need to "say something," to explain why bad things happen, or even try to put a positive spin on something that isn't positive. 

Common things we hear: 

"Everything happens for a reason."

"God just wanted his child to come home."

"Give your life to Jesus because that could have been you who died."

"God has a purpose in taking him from us."

I'm mean no disrespect to people who say these things, or even believe these things. But, I must say that comments like these have potential to be very hurtful when people are grieving and mourning. There is no positive spin on violent death. Those of us who loved Angel will always have a "Angel-sized" hole in our lives. The loss is brutal, real, and painful.

We grieve, but not without hope. My best encouragement is found in Psalm 34:18 -- "The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in Spirit." The darkness is real, but we don't have to walk through it alone. Jesus can say those who mourn are blessed because He is there with them. The hurting have a special place in God's heart.

Last night at Embrace I sang one of my favorite songs by a band named "Waterdeep": "18 Bullet Holes".  The gist of the song is that our world is jacked-up: full of pain, suffering, death, and grief.  We grieve, but we don't grieve alone. Jesus suffered and he still suffers with us. God is sobbing with us, walking with us through the darkness alongside us. It won't be easy, but we can get through it.

"Oh, God, it hurts so bad to love anybody down here

Why don't you come and help me out?

Cause I can't even see clear

Oh, God, it hurts so bad to love anybody down here

Oh, that's right, You know so well

One thorny crown, three nails, and a spear"

Waterdeep, "18 Bullet Holes"

This song goes out to my friends, Lissette and Cristian. You're not alone in the struggle.

-Pastor John