Maybe you are here with me, with a heart that is broken and a soul that has been worn down. Maybe you are in the midst of a storm, the waves of grief drowning you as they hit you one by one. Maybe all these battles have worn you down, fight after fight draining you until you are no longer sure you can take one more step. Maybe there are no more words to describe all this — the loss, the broken dreams, the frozen hopes, the sorrow, the anger, the despair.
There are these questions, that linger around in the folds of our souls, that take up space more than we ever like to admit — “How long, Lord? How much more of this pain, this sorrow, this hardship?”
“How long, O Lord? Will You forget me forever?
How long will You hide Your face from me?
How long shall I take counsel in my soul,
Having sorrow in my heart daily?
How long will my enemy be exalted over me?” (Psalm 13:1-2)
These feelings, they remind me of those moments wondering through grounds unknown, deeper and deeper — until the moment you realize you are lost and alone. That dawning realization, the weight settling on top of your soul and stealing your breath — the moment when you realize that you do not know which way to go now.
There are moments, I find, when the hardest thing to face is that all words echo empty — in our minds, in our hearts, in our souls. We can fill our minds with the right words, and yet the empty echoes hurt the walls of our hearts.
Emptiness has a way of hurting us.
Yet we know that the pain ringing through, the doubts drowning us, the confusion and hurt, God is still here. Even on those days when the emptiness of it all hurts us the most, we remind our hearts of our Savior, God with us — in the hurt, in the confusion, in the doubts, in the storm. The Word become flesh, He is always with us right here as we open up the pages in our Bible and let His Word pour out on our hearts.
“The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears,
And delivers them out of all their troubles.
The Lord is near to those who have a broken heart,
And saves such as have a contrite spirit.
Many are the afflictions of the righteous,
But the Lord delivers him out of them all.
The Lord redeems the soul of His servants,
And none of those who trust in Him shall be condemned.” (Psalm 34:17-19,22)
In the midst of the deep pain, in the midst of vast darkness, in the midst of the valley: the Lord is our Shepherd and He will hear our hearts. In the moments of pain gripping our hearts, of sorrow surrounding our souls — we stand in the promise of redemption and grace to come. In our suffering, we can rest in the promise of our Savior coming near, knowing that He has walked this broken road before us.
These questions take space, and in the emptiness of words there might be no answers; but we have the promise of a presence of our great God, who is near and will never leave us. These feelings, these questions — we can bring them to the One who created us, knowing that He already knows our hearts. Not one part of this is a surprise to Him. He will carry you.
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