Held.

I just love it when God speaks to me through random things, like music. Recently, I fell in love with the song “Held” by Natalie Grant.

You can listen to it here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TVEs0PyvbVk&feature=related
And here are the lyrics:

Two months is too little
They let him go
They had no sudden healing
To think that providence
Would take a child from his mother
While she prays, is appalling
Who told us we’d be rescued
What has changed and
Why should we be saved from nightmares
We’re asking why this happens to us
Who have died to live, it’s unfair
This is what it means to be held
How it feels, when the sacred is torn from your life
And you survive
This is what it is to be loved and to know
That the promise was when everything fell
We’d be held
This hand is bitterness
We want to taste it and
Let the hatred numb our sorrows
The wise hand opens slowly
To lilies of the valley and tomorrow
This is what it means to be held
How it feels, when the sacred is torn from your life
And you survive
This is what it is to be loved and to know
That the promise was when everything fell
We’d be held
If hope is born of suffering
If this is only the beginning
Can we not wait, for one hour
Watching for our savior
This is what it means to be held
How it feels, when the sacred is torn from your life
And you survive
This is what it is to be loved and to know
That the promise was when everything fell
We’d be held

This song brought something to my attention that might seem obvious–God never promises that our lives are going to be easy or painless. Sometimes, I look at the lives of people around me and wonder how God could have let this happen to them. What kind of God would take a mother from her child, a child from its mother, what kind of God would allow children to starve or be abused? Why does God allow things like this to happen?

I feel like these are questions that every Christian, and a lot of non-Christians struggle with. The pastor at the church that I went to today even preached on the subject! It’s huge. This song really brought the issue to the front of my mind. When I first heard it, I struggled a lot with what she was trying to say. Is it meant to be encouraging?

A lot of Christian songs tell us to hang onto God, and we’ll soon see signs of His deliverance. But the fact is, God never promises us any kind of deliverance here on Earth. You might be facing the hardest time of your life, you might be crying out to God, asking why He’s doing this to you. Your cry for deliverance is perfectly understandable.

It says in Matthew 5:45 that “He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.” Hard times are going to happen whether you are righteous or unrighteous, there is nothing we can do about it. This might seem unfair–it seems as though God is leaving us on our own to face intense trials. But what does He see from His point of view?

Every day, I am learning more and more about who God is. I know that God is not evil. I know that He is good, He is holy, He is powerful. He created us lovingly, and loved us so much that He wouldn’t let us die for the horrible sins that we have committed. He redeemed us from an eternity spent in hell! But He never promised us heaven on earth–He promised us that evil men would hate us, they would seek to kill us. He promised us that persecution would be rampant. He also promised us a Comforter, and He promised us that He will be coming for us.

When horrible things are happening to us, when we feel as though we want to die with grief, we need to remember this. He has not promised us a life without pain, without heartache. However, He has promised us that He would be there for us, holding us in the palm of His hand. We place our faith in God’s promises–His promise of eternity, most of all. Some day we will die, and he will take away all of that pain, and we will be joyful. Until that day, His comforting, loving arms are enough. He will not abandon us in our pain.

The promise was when everything fell, we’d be held.

“Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort…”
2 Corinthians 1:3

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