“I will turn their mourning into gladness; I will give them comfort and joy instead of sorrow.” Jeremiah 31:13
God is good. At the beginning of loss and in the midst of anguished grief and today in a possibly momentary quieter place God is good. I’ve never lost sight of this fact and God’s goodness has sustained me even at my darkest points of grief.
Jacob and I had a long coffee-fueled conversation (did you know even decafe provides fuel?) earlier this week. It was good to catch-up with him beyond the needed daily logistics as we exchange the girls into each other’s responsibility. We are right in the same place in the grieving process. On one hand we can’t help but see the beauty of God’s provision in the midst of extreme circumstances. I still marvel that Jacob moved here right into an inexpensive rental and then stepped into a job within 3 weeks of his arrival. The girls are adjusting well to their new school situation. They are making friends and Amity has her first birthday party this weekend. The girls have always longed for interaction with family and now they are richly blessed in visiting various family members nearly every weekend. And in a wonderful statement from God of “I’m still here and I haven’t forgotten you” Jacob has been given a promotion at work – five weeks into his new job!
Jacob expressed so well how he feels about this. On one hand he so clearly sees God pouring blessing over him. God has provided abundantly and continues to provide abundantly. But the thought that sidles right up to the blessing is “I still don’t have Becky.” There is a sense in which the provision feels too little and too late . . . that it wouldn’t even be necessary if Becky were still here.
Cognitive dissonance – what Jacob thinks he knows to be true – that God is a distant, mean entity, providing salvation on one hand, but then randomly and without feeling taking His good gifts back – doesn’t match up with the ongoing reality of a God that continues to shower blessing and attention on Jacob and the girls. I sense a deep truth here that nothing in this life is unadulterated, perfect, whole, complete and without taint. God is good and He has the victory, but perfection waits until His victory obliterates time into eternity. On that final day “Gladness and joy will overtake us, and sorrow and sighing will flee away.”
“They will enter Zion with singing; everlasting joy will crown their heads. Gladness and joy will overtake them, and sorrow and sighing will flee away.” Isaiah 35:10