I don’t know what’s wrong with me lately. Let me start by saying I love my church. It is a very unique place where I always feel the presence of God, no matter the reason for my being there. Why then have I been completely reluctant to go there for the last six months? I think about it every Sunday and every Sunday I sleep in. I know I need to be taking my daughter so that she can socialize and make new friends there (she gets Bible teaching all week long at school), but she seems so uncomfortable going to her classes that I don’t make her when we do go. She sits with me. Plus there is a selfish part of me that enjoys her being there.
I can actually pinpoint the moment in time when it happened I think. It was the day they told us that our pastor’s cancer was back and that he was ill. I had prayed so hard for him as so many others in our town had and it was like someone punched me in the gut when I heard the news. Even other churches and entire schools were praying fervently for him. He was a genuinely good man who could teach the Word like nobody I’ve ever encountered. Never did I look at my watch during service and wonder what was for lunch. Never did I try to get out of going because I didn’t feel like it. When we first went there it was with friends and I had come from a big church and really didn’t want to go back down that road. I liked little country churches where you could really get to know people. When I heard him preach though, I just absolutely couldn’t imagine going anywhere else. He never preached “at” you, he taught you. He never made you feel ashamed, he made you feel loved and redeemed. He was no hypocrite either. He practiced exactly what he preached and he was the same person no matter where you saw him (even at the Catfish House). Even my ten year old enjoyed listening to him.
He passed away several months ago. We got the news about him almost at the same time that my parents started going downhill. It was just too much at once. I didn’t know him on a personal level, but he was my shepherd in a sense. He guided us in God’s Word. I’ve never doubted my faith and I’m probably closer to God now than I have ever been, but the thought of sitting through church service sends waves of panic over me. Can I keep it together? Will they see me cry for no reason? Can I make it through this song without needing to run to the restroom and fix my makeup and blow my nose? Will I be depressed the rest of the day? There is so much stress around that one event now that I avoid it all together. It isn’t that I’m depressed or sad…my heart is literally just broken. I know there is a reason that things happen and that with time it will all make sense, but for now I find myself scratching my head. Probably He is sending us someone fantastic to pick up where Brother David left off. Maybe it happened to spark something in his family’s life that we can’t even see. It isn’t for us to question I suppose, but the human in me still wants answers. The same can be said of my parents. Why now? Why this? And of our cousin that I just learned has Leukemia and my friend whose husband just died of cancer and another friend whose father is going through chemo… I just shake my head in disbelief. It’s all too much. My heart is in pieces.
One day we will have all the answers we need. Until then I suppose we just have to keep living by faith. I will quote my favorite verse here…”Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things unseen.”
I guess I’m saying all this to share with others that no matter what you are going through, you are not alone. There are others hurting with you and who are praying for you whether you know it or not. We all just have to be strong together and remember that God is with us. God is good all the time. ALL THE TIME God is good. That is what helps me hang on to what little sanity I have left. I’m just sayin…