My No Good, Rotten, Awful, Week

"Let sorrow do it's work, send grief and pain.

Sweet is their parting cry, sweet their refrain. 

When they can sing with me, more love O Christ to thee. More love to thee. More love to thee."   Elizabeth Prentiss

I kind of hate that song. It reminds me that I live in a world punctuated with pain and sorrow. I don't want to live in that world. I want to live in a world of success, joy and ease. However, it also reminds me that the love of Christ comforts me in that pain, and somehow the more I love Christ the more I will find peace in the midst of this no good, rotten, awful week. 

It has been that kind of week: one where I have been forced to face the ugliness of child abuse, abandonment, death, adultery and teen pregnancy. My heart has been broken many times this week. So how do you face those?

Well the first thing I do is cry. Well, technically the first thing I do is reach for M&M's and Arrested Development reruns to make me feel better. But they only work for a little while. When I go to bed my heart is still broken, and so are my friends lives. So, I give myself time to be sad. I need time to absorb the pain, and to mourn it. I do not enjoy this process at all but I know it is important. 

The second thing I do is pray. (I'm sorry this isn't first, but I am being honest.) I find these times of prayer to be extraordinarily precious. God makes special promises to be with us in times of sadness: The LORD is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.(Psalm 34:18 ESV) I find that he keeps that promise. As a matter of fact, the more time I spend with him in those moments, the more I find that he is sadder about my friends' pain than I am. 

I can't help but love God more in those precious moments. How amazing that the Lord of the Universe knows what it feels like to mourn the death of His own Son. The brokenness of this world has hurt him even more than it has hurt us. He enters into that pain with us. He goes through it with us. I can't get over that amazing fact about grace. 

Man of Sorrows, what a name, for the Son of God who came...Hallelujah what a savior. 

Finally, as I mourn with God a glimmer of light begins to dawn. God is so invested in healing this broken world that he gave his own Son for it. If God would willingly give so much for us, we can trust him. We have no choice but trust him. God believes that the day of glory will be worth the dark night of pain. Since I know he loves me, I will believe that too. 

I will believe it even on no good, rotten, awful weeks. 

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