The Kingdom of God is frustrating, mysterious, slow, inefficient.
Tag Archives | character of God
God is in dark, dark places. But not with an instant pick-me-up solution. Sometimes it seems He is doing nothing and that perhaps He isn’t there. The cries for help seem to bounce off the ceiling. Pain is painful, and no less so for believers.
But alongside the truth of suffering, we need to acknowledge the truth that God is good, and that He does good work in dark pits.
Unfortunately, far too many of us suffer because we think the questions mean we are not true believers. That if we had a real faith then even in the most tragic of situations we wouldn’t have any questions. That our faith would be unshakeable. Unbreakable. That’s the lie. I can’t help but wonder if the opposite is actually true. What if our questions actually reveal the strength of our faith rather than its weakness?
There was something in me that needed to see for myself. I had had the supernatural miracle of an encounter with the divine messenger, but I needed to see the supernatural made natural: a woman who couldn’t be pregnant, miraculously pregnant. Sometimes we need to see it in someone else before we can truly believe it for ourselves.
I can truly say, then, that God has been vividly present in my pain. Not that he wants us to suffer, either directly or indirectly. Rather, he is present in our suffering, helping to redeem and transform it.
We were at the back of the hall, both of us, huddled up, our backs against the wall. Her coat smelt faintly of the secret cigarette she’d smoked before she came in.
Praise the Lord.
Praise the God of summer and bloom;
Praise the God of autumn and shrivelled leaves.
I’m trying to tell the truth sideways, so this is a little different: a fictional piece, exploring the themes of suffering in 1 Peter. If you want to catch up, read Episode 1, and Episode 2. Today’s (Episode 3 of 5) is based on 1 Peter 5:6-14, 2:21-25, and 4:12-16. Take a cup of tea, […]