Sunday, October 19, 2008

On Worship and Trials

Hannah is playing, "You are altogether Worthy" on the piano and singing along with it. As she sings, "You'll never know how much it cost, to see my sin upon the cross",  I realize the truth in those words. 

We'll never know His agony, His separation from His Father, and the intensity of His torment and pain. We'll never know what He endured for us. We experience pain and trial on this earth on such a small scale. Even our darkest hour and deepest grief cannot be compared to His. We are consumed sometimes with our pain and yet we only share a portion of His.

Hannah continues to sing and play and my soul lifts in worship as she does. 

"So here I am to bow down, Here I am to worship, Here I am to say that You are my God...Open my eyes and let me see."

So here we are Lord. The bruised and broken kneeling before you. We come to you thirsty. Many are parched.  A neighbour mom raising children on her own,  her job now redundent. They found a spot for her on the evening shift and weekends in a group home. She cries, "When do I see my children?"

Mendelt Hoekstra loses his wife to cancer last year and he carries on, crying out in His lonliness and grief as he raises their three dutch blond children, six years old and under, on his own. 

A cousin in New Jersey lies in her bed, blinking her words to her family as ALS ravages her body. She hasn't walked or hugged or eaten in over a year. Open my eyes and let me see, Lord.

Jesus said, "These things I have spoken to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world." John 16:33 NASV 

We are pilgrims here. Sojourners. This world is not our home. When we suffer here, as hard as it is, it will not last. We will be made like Him. We do not suffer in vain.

"Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its perfect result, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing."  James 1:2-4 NASV

Yet we cry, we bleed and our anguish is real. You comfort us. We find peace in You. When we seek You, You are there. You never leave or forsake us. You are the God of all comfort.

"Weeping may last for the night, But a shout of joy comes in the morning." Psalm 30:5  NASV

Some nights are longer than others. Sometimes there are seasons of grief and anguish. Long ones. But joy does come. It returns to us again. We have a new depth of character. Because of what we have endured, the comfort we have received, we can reach out and help others in their dark night.

Hannah continued to play and I thanked God for her, for the gift of her song, for the journey in thought where it led me. And isn't that so with worship. When we enter in, we are transported from where we are in self to thoughts of Him. Worship blesses God but it blesses us also. Let's find time today to worship Him, no matter how we feel or how hard the road we travel has become.

Heavenly Father, so many I know are hurting right now. As they hurt, I hurt too. Lord God, help them to draw near to you. For those who are just too bitter and hurt and can't draw near to You Lord, I know You are near to them. Lord, give them the grace just to stand and their joy will return again. Oh Lord we give our trials to You. We yield these tough times and ourselves in the process. May a peace of righteousness be birthed as we allow ourselves to be trained by it. We love You imperfectly Father, but You love us perfectly. You understand we are frail and needy, broken and bruised. Thank You for that love.

2 comments:

Night Owl said...

How true that we are able to go to God with any amount of broken, bruised burden. If we have God, nothing can tear us down...right? I'm not so sure about that right now...
I know someone understands my pain at least, even when I don't quite understand it myself.
It's so important to remember that everything passes...I often have difficulty remembering that in the particularly long, dark, cold nights. Thanks for the reminder.
Love, Night Owl

Angcat said...

Beautiful, Joyful!

And so true. Joy does come in the morning.
It is so easy for trouble to steal our joy, yet when we rest in Him and know who we are in Him and that He has not forsaken us, but has good plans in mind for us, then the joy and the peace stay, despite circumstances.