Where Is God When It Hurts?
Scripture Reading — Psalm 139:7-12
If I say, “Surely the darkness will hide me and the light become night around me,” even the darkness will not be dark to you.
—Psalm 139:11 —
When life goes our way, it’s not too difficult to confess that God is with us. But “where is God when it hurts?”—as Philip Yancey asks thoughtfully in one of his books.
Some years ago a person struggling with an addiction came to talk. He could not find God, and he said, “On Sundays you talk about a God who is where we are, no matter what, but he is not there for me. Where is this God?”
A married couple whose close relative had taken her own life was similarly puzzled. They asked, “Where was God during the final moments of her life?”
Sometimes it seems God is nowhere to be found. David, who wrote Psalm 139, also cried out in Psalm 22:1: “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” The Lord Jesus, hanging on a cross, cried out the words of Psalm 22:1 as well: “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” (Matthew 27:46).
But God is there even in our darkest moments. “If I say, ‘Surely the darkness will hide me, and the light become night around me,’ even the darkness will not be dark to you.” Because of Jesus’ willingness to be forsaken by his Father, you and I have the guarantee that he will never leave or forsake us. And when you doubt, reread this psalm and claim his promise.
Lord, thank you for the assurance that you are with us even in our darkest moments. Help us to believe your hand will guide us. For Jesus’ sake, Amen.