With You In The Cow Poop, Or The Promises of Christian Radio*

Recently a big tragedy struck my life and the lives of many around me. Unfortunately due to legal reasons I cannot disclose the tragedy** (and it’s likely I’ll never be able to to). These things never come when it’s convenient, if there is ever a convenient time to begin with, and so the news came while I was at work. Yesterday I saw a person who I worked with that day, which they reminded me of, but I don’t remember them.

When my wife and I have a conflict I try to resolve immediately. I can’t stand the tension, I can’t stand the division, I immediately apologize for the stupidity I contributed and I try to make it all well again. But when it comes to matters of sadness and grief and pain I like most people try to put it off like paying bills or a fixing something in the garage I really don’t want to do. My schedule had me booked, and so I used that as a way to not actually work through the process of pain. Someone recently used the analysis of holding a beach ball under water – it takes all sorts of effort to keep it under the water so you know it’s there yet you never let it see the light of day. And of course the deeper under the water the higher it’ll fly when it comes up.

Finally after a week I had to face what had happened – there was really no avoiding, as it was thrown in my face in a very literal way. I was likely a bit cranky that day. I was shaking and stuttering, clearly on edge and red in the face.

We deal with a God who isn’t afraid to hear what we’ve got – even if it isn’t exactly flattering. We deal with a God who wants unflinching honesty, but mostly gets little paper sailboats of honesty arriving on the shore of a big ocean. And we deal with a God who is with us in this pain.

I think too many people try to hype up God as someone who takes away the pain. He’s the one who makes the boo-boo all better. But I think less and less of God of doing this. Moreso, I see him as with us in the pain because he can’t call us out of it if he isn’t already in there with us to begin with.

Lately I’ve been very interested in the promises of God, and I think they aren’t as numerous as we’d like them to be or even report them to be. But the promises of God are deeper than the credit we give him. And that’s what counts.

*This is a reference to a recent post. I’m sorry I haven’t responded to comments yet, I haven’t had much emotional energy lately (reference the subject of this post).

**My wife and daughter are fine.

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4 Responses to With You In The Cow Poop, Or The Promises of Christian Radio*

  1. I don’t see in the Bible as God ever saying He will take away the pain. That is one of the crocks of the health/wealth garbage. But I find plenty of places where it says God will be with me in that pain. Been praying for you and your job Charlie. Will include this situation (whatever it is) in that prayer. Kind cool. “God, be with Charlie in that job hunt. Show Him a place you want Him. Meet his needs. And you know that other thing? Yeah, You know. Have your will. Give your wisdom.”

  2. Carolyn says:

    Charlie, I have diagnosed myself as being allergic to pain. So I avoid it at all costs, lest I have an “allergic” reaction to it.

    I don’t need to know the details of this recent tragedy. I am glad to know that your wife and daughter are fine. Thank you for thinking to reassure us before we all jumped on here asking.

    I will be praying that God will help you keep all of your beach balls from smacking you in the face when they pop up out of the water. I am grateful beyond words that you hear His voice calling you through all of this. I’m grateful that you know that He is with you in the pain.

    Blessings and peace to you.

  3. David says:

    Dude, sorry for your pain. I am. You have my email, and cell already, feel free to use them.

    You know what I hate about pain, empty Bible band-aids that if you are really “super spiritual” work. Slapping Jesus versus on things doesn’t remove the pain. Even Jesus wept when he heard the news of Lazarus’ death. Pain is a part of living life, and so is conflict. There is always a conflict between darkness and light. (Matt 11:12)

    I only have my own experience, and here it is. Many years ago I had a terribly painful break-up. I was a zombie for nearly a year. I worked and worked and worked… and then one day I took a little trip to the ocean, working on the mobile bag phone on the way up. When I go to the beach, I was sitting in the sun and it mugged me. I was a wreck, and yet I felt God’s presence. He didn’t take away the pain, but I somehow knew He understood – I can’t explain that knowing-ness – I just felt that way in my spirit.

    13 years later I was not really over it, and it was ruining a new relationship. I went to see a prophet from Egypt, and he asked me to stand before the church. There he spoke a word of healing that went through my spirit like a sword; I was free at last.

    Emotional healing comes in many different ways, some times it is the hard work of sharing our feelings, being angry, and just being – but God is not far off. I promise.

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