Ishshah’s Story is pleased to share with you this sensitively written post from guest contributor, Virginia, who lives in Nairobi, Kenya. Thankyou Virginia!
I know all the sisters and brothers reading this post have at one time or another felt that God is distant due to the things that we are going through. In such instances we are not always as enthusiastic about Him though we have not entirely left Him. But there are other times that seem tougher and you wonder what should be said at such times.
My friend had just called to tell me that our mutual friend had passed away in not so good a circumstance. I was so shocked and the most grieving thing was that this family had gone through a series of tragedies like these. I thought about the mother in this family who had watched not one, not two, but three children and a husband die in their prime years. I could not help but exclaim – how much can one woman cry? At that particular time I was also going through a personal tragedy and probably I included myself in this groan of pain.
Over the months that have followed, I have thought about the gospel of ease that has been peddled in many Christian forums and wondered if in our bid to please the self and keep it comfortable we have distorted the gospel to some extent. Now there are many ways of looking at responses to adversity like the one above, but I am drawn to the Samaritan lady at the well. When her Lord came and spoke to her of the water of life which is Christ living His life in us, this was her response:
The woman said to Him, Sir, give me this water, so that I may never get thirsty nor have to come [continually all the way] here to draw. John 4: 15 (AMP)
I want to draw our attention to the fact that going to the well was not a piece of cake for this lady. While for others it could have been a time and place of socializing, for this lady going to the well was an exercise exposing her to the ridicule and gossip of other women who were much displeased with her way of life. It is no wonder she wanted comfort in this area – oh that she would stop having to walk this road of shame and torture. But Jesus was interested in more than the social comfort of the lady and wanted to give her Himself.
Likewise in our society, we are confronted by issues that we need rest and comfort from but while we get salvation and eternal rest from Christ, things challenging our worldly comfort still find their way to us: an illness and death here, bankruptcy there etc. It seems that as much as we were promised worldly rest in our Christian forums, it is elusive. It is in such times we need to relook at Hebrews chapter 11 where faith stands whether the promise is received or not.
Now at the time of this dark night of the soul we might not be able to shout and say: “My God remains God whether I am delivered from this situation or not”, but amidst our tears and sorrow we can whisper: “Ease or tribulation, His grace is sufficient” and we hold on to Him, or even just to the hem of His garment.
Be encouraged because He Is.
Virginia, Nairobi, Kenya