Philippians 1:12-14 (ESV)
12I want you to know, brothers, that what has happened to me has really served to advance the gospel, 13so that it has become known throughout the whole imperial guard and to all the rest that my imprisonment is for Christ. 14And most of the brothers, having become confident in the Lord by my imprisonment, are much more bold to speak the word without fear.
It was just less than two weeks ago that a friend of mine tragically died. I miss him and feel like his life was cut way too short. Worse, yet, is that his death left his wife without her husband and children without their dad. There are no words to explain an event like this…to give “reason” for this loss. What is really interesting, however, is that within that tragedy and pain, many, many people are pausing to reflect on their own lives. There are many spiritual questions being asked and many renewed commitments to faith.
So…was my friend’s death, then, a good thing? No. It was tragic and filled with pain and loss. But when I look at Paul’s words in Philippians 1:12 (see above), I notice that something happens within the tragedy or pain. God doesn’t cause the problem, but he steps into the aftermath and comforts and reveals himself in ways that we otherwise might miss. That’s what I love about our God. He is in our most vulnerable moments, waiting for us to reach out to him.
One person said, “Without suffering and pain, we would never feel a need for God.” How true that is.
Lord, I don’t know what will happen today or tomorrow or beyond that, but I will trust that when pain and grief hit me, you will be there. Please be present in my life today, even in the small things. I want to walk with you in each and every step of my life. Amen.
By: Rob Strong