pain is no measure of his faithfulness

Reflecting one year later on a great deal of change and uncertainty, loss and newness, anger and sadness, knowing and knowing nothing, I’m reminded by a friend tonight of the words below. On the eve of the homicide-loss support group beginning again, and the ways we try to hold the pain of great loss and injury saying both that it should not have been this way and yet somehow hoping God is still faithful, I’m reminded of these words. When I curl up on a couch with a neighbor and hear of wrestling with family and wrestling with heartache and wrestling with what we thought would be versus what actually is, and then wrestling with how to look a neighbor in the face and tell the truth about it all–– and ultimately how we try to make sense of God in it all––I’m reminded of these words.

And more than anything, I’m reminded that I need not push so hard to try to force something meaningless to make sense; to try to force something heartbreaking to be lovely; to try to force a fix on anything that is broken. I can, however, say that the heartache and loss and grieving and wrenching and uncertainty are no measure of his faithfulness. And so we fight not to make sense of it, not to make it prettier or easier to share over a game of bridge or a glass of wine, not to make it a lesson for Sunday School class that ties nicely into felt and boards. Instead, we fight only to manage to open our hands, and open our hearts, and do our best to remain open to what waits ahead. We wrestle to remember that the mess is no measure of his faithfulness.

Especially one year later.

So to my friend, thanks for the reminder.

djordan
Pine Tree

I believe in a blessing I don’t understand 
I’ve seen rain fall on wicked and the just 
Rain is no measure of his faithfulness 
He withholds no good thing from us 
No good thing from us, no good thing from us 

I believe in a peace that flows deeper than pain 
That broken find healing in love 
Pain is no measure of his faithfulness 
He withholds no good thing from us 
No good thing from us, no good thing from us 

I will open my hands, will open my heart 
I will open my hands, will open my heart 
I am nodding my head an emphatic yes 
To all that You have for me 

I believe in a fountain that will never dry 
Though I’ve thirsted and didn’t have enough 
Thirst is no measure of his faithfulness 
He withholds no good thing from us 
No good thing from us, no good thing from us 

I will open my hands, will open my heart 
I will open my hands, will open my heart 
I am nodding my head an emphatic yes 
To all that You have for me 

No good thing from us, no good thing from us 
He withholds no good thing from us 

I will open my hands, will open my heart 
I will open my hands, will open my heart 
I am nodding my head an emphatic yes 
To all that You have for me

+ Sara Groves, “Open My Hands” from Invisible Empires

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