Saturday, July 6, 2019

When bad things happen to good people.


When I was eight years old my parents went through a bitter divorce. I was clueless and had never even seen them speak a cross word to one another. My little world came crashing down overnight. My mom moved from southern to northern California so I only got to see her on holidays and summers. In the seventh grade I decided to move in with her and my step dad and go to school there. It was a tiny school out in the country with less than 10 people in my class. It was so small in fact that they joined classes to save money on staff and so we were in the same room as the eighth graders. One of those students happened to be the girl that is now my wife.

I would never wish divorce on any couple or family. But I also wouldn’t change my situation in a million years because God brought something beautiful out of the brokenness.

My wife and I had been married for only nine months when her mother, 47 at the time, was diagnosed with cancer. Two weeks after getting the news that she was sick my wife and I packed up our little apartment on campus in Reno, NV and headed east for North Carolina. She finished her race less than a year later and went home to be with the Lord. People aren’t supposed to die at 48 and our girls never had the chance to meet their Grandma Linda. But in that time of caring for her family we found a church that forever changed our lives. What we thought would be a short intermission became a life calling.

It seems everyone has been touched by cancer’s curse at some point in their life. It’s an ugly disease and it’s just not fair. Let me be clear that I DO NOT BELIEVE that God gave my wife’s mother cancer. But in the midst of the tragedy he was at work guiding our path toward yours.

See if my parents never divorced then I wouldn’t have met my wife. If my wife’s mother hadn’t become sick we never would have moved to Western North Carolina, went into ministry and started writing this blog.

He is the God of meaning in meaningless situations. He is the God of hope in hopeless circumstances. He is the God of purpose in the middle of life’s messes. He is the great redeemer and we can trust that He is bigger than whatever it is we are dealing with. We can trust Him.

“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” – Romans 8:28 NIV

Jesus is proof of the lengths that God will go to, lovingly working for your good because you are called according to his purpose. If you have made it through and can see God’s hand praise him for what he’s already done. If you are in the middle then trust that he is in control, he loves you forever and he IS taking care of you whether you can see it or not.

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