RSS Blog Archives Get My Newsletter

Blog

Good God

She either means what she’s singing with every fiber of her being or she’s just super expressive. Her beautiful face is illuminated by the colorful stage lights moving in tempo with the song. Her eyes closed and a hand raised, she offers up her resolute praise.

You are good, good, oh-ohh.
You are good, good, oh-ohh.
You are good, good, oh-oh-ohh.
You are good, good, oh-ohh.

I think she means it.

I don’t know her, but I know of her personal tragedy and the knowledge makes me choke on the words as I attempt to sing the same. I glance next to me at the Holy Spirit to see if he notices my inner turmoil but his gaze is fixed upward. The questions churning in my mind have jagged edges: How can a good God allow innocent children to suffer and die? How can a good God ignore the prayers of thousands for their beloved pastor to not succumb to cancer? How can a good God allow one of his faithful daughters to give birth to a stillborn baby?

The oppressive questions darken my heart with pain and grief, but it’s not until I feel the Holy Spirit’s hand on my shoulder that I realize I’m crying. Without a word, he draws me to his side and holds me while my tears flow there in the darkened auditorium.

Later, while he’s seated across from me at the coffee shop and I’m warming my hands on the steaming mug of chai tea he asks, “How are you?”

“I’m struggling,” I replied. “I can’t wrap my mind around how she can sing those words and mean them after what she’s gone through.” I pause and take a deep breath. “And I’m terrified of what tragedy I’ll face. I feel like I’m waiting for the other shoe to drop. Waiting to see what horrific thing you’ll allow in my life to test me like Job. The truth is,” I stop and examine the honey-tone wood grain on the table. “The truth is, I don’t know if I will be capable of believing that you are good in the aftermath. Or that I will ever want to.” I fiddle with my mug while I work up the courage to meet his gaze. When I finally do, I don’t sense any anger or judgment.

“Why don’t you ask them?” he says.

“What? Ask who?”

“The people you’re thinking of who have walked through tragedy. Get them to tell you their stories. Find out how they can say that I am good, even after their storm.”

I sit back in my chair and ponder the ramifications of his proposal. As much as I care about the people I have in mind, I am not eager to dive, pen-first, into their pain. But I’m already hurting for them. It would be nice to get to share in the hope they have. And maybe their story needs sharing. I find myself nodding. “Okay. I’ll do it.”

His answering smile is sweet as he takes a sip of his double espresso. “Taste and see that the Lord is good. Blessed is the man who takes refuge in him.”

***

Motherhood/life experience/etc. has unleashed a host of hellacious fears that threaten to permanently maim me if not combated. I have long tried to avoid them, but now find myself at a place in life where I am forced to engage not only those fears, but also some of the difficult aspects of following Christ. Growing pains, I guess.

Maybe, just maybe, I’m not alone in my struggle, which is why I hope you will join me. I do not know how long our journey will last nor do I know how many stories will be told. I don’t pretend to think this will be an easy road. But the roads worth taking rarely are.
Romans 15:13

I’ll add links to each edition as we go.

Good God: Holt Pope Edition

Good God: Erin Austin Edition

Good God: Jana Jenkins Edition

 

Share This:TwitterFacebookPinterestGoogle+LinkedInEmail
  1. Jen

    Wow, Beth. This is so timely for me. I relate to all of this post, but especially, “Motherhood/life experience/etc. has unleashed a host of hellacious fears.” Me too, friend, me too. Thank you for doing this and doing the work. Love you!

    • beth

      Thanks for walking it with me friend. Love you back!

  2. Beth,
    First let my simply say, everything you have just written is my current struggle as of late. Becoming a mother 9 months ago, my life changed, as it should. It’s the most amazing and yet the most terrifying experience I have gone through in my life. Each day I make a point upon waking up to thank God for the blessings he has given me in my life. There have been days of serious struggle, day’s I remain in a state of purgatory of some sorts with my identity.
    I began with the issue of trying to sort each piece of the puzzle by tackling the millions of fears, frustrations, and anxiety one at a time. Simply put I wasn’t happy. I continue to remain content with each moment. I would worried myself sick over losing my other half, my child being sick, or someone taking her. I would also worry about them if something happened to me. The “what-ifs” are endless.
    Reading your words allows me to find comfort in knowing I am not alone with this struggle. I am looking forward to your upcoming blogs! Thank you, you have made my morning!

    • beth

      Thank you for taking the time to leave a comment! Glad to have you along for the journey.

  3. Debbie S. Richardson

    He is really there every second of every day & doesn’t mind showing His L♡VE!

  4. Brandi

    Beth..wow how moving…you are not alone my friend…i have been in such a dark place for a long time I will journey with u and if I can help in anyway I surely will …like the verse says where 2 or more are gathered in his name he is in the midst…God truly has led me where he knew I needed to be.

    • beth

      Thanks for sharing Brandi and thanks for joining me. So glad you’re where God led you to be!

  5. Beautiful, Beth. And an important task to tackle. w all need inspiration and reminders that God is Good even when life tries to convince us otherwise. (Like your site look too!)

    • beth

      Thank you Marcia. 🙂

  6. Kris

    I look forward to taking this journey with and through you.

    • beth

      Thank you friend.

  7. Laurie Dodd

    I’m looking forward to following you in this journey! God bless sweet you!

    • beth

      Thanks Laurie. 🙂

  8. Gay

    Having a lot of situations in my life right now that I too am having a hard time wrapping my mind around. Looking forward to experiencing this journey with you…

    • beth

      Glad to have you Gay.

  9. Jacquie

    You are amazing!!! Thank you so much for listening to the Holy Spirit and sharing God’s goodness and love, even in times when goodness and love are so hard to see!

    • beth

      Thanks for your support Aunt Jacquie!

  10. Evon Peddycord

    WOW amazing, I have been in a dark place for years and wonder why God doesn’t move me out of it, I look forward to this and hope to encourage and be encouraged

    • beth

      I’m so sorry for your dark place. Glad you’re with us.

  11. Debbie

    Thank you for your words. My belief was born before the loss of my husband, May 8 was 2 years, but my love for God has come out of this. Yes there are still times when it is hard and I want to scream and yell and give up but I know the journey that I am on is what I need. I am not perfect but I am perfect for and with his love.
    I look forward to following you on this wonderful journey.

    • beth

      So sorry for your loss Debbie. Happy to have you along.

  12. Lois

    Our struggles can truly hold us back. I know from experience that everything we go through our children do also. Allowing God to heal us where we are is trusting that he will not leave us either. Prayers for your journey through this. May it help each one of us grow closer to God.

    • beth

      Thank you Lois.

  13. Carolyn Trucano

    Soon my husband and I will celebrate fifty years of marriage. As I look back on our lives together – and the lives of others we have known through ministry – there are many who have gone through the dark places, or dark days (as described by the comments). It may come through the loss of a child, the loss of a spouse, or the loss of ministry opportunities because people around us were focused on other things.
    My heart goes out to all of those who have experienced pain, but are willing to join you in the journey to “Taste and see that the Lord is good.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *