- He sustained Lucy in her most fragile days.
- How He has provided for us financially over the past several months.
I cut my list short because then I remembered something that I fully believe the Holy Spirit brought to mind the other day as I was listening to the radio. I heard a story from a mom who told of how her daughter had been diagnosed with a brain tumor and was only given 3 to 5 years to live. And now here they were, 20-something years later, and her daughter was alive and well. God had done the impossible! The miraculous! The story was followed by a remark from the radio host in which he said, "God is good."
That is usually our response when we hear these "miracle stories." But then I got to thinking... What if these stories had a different ending? What if that little girl really only lived another 3 to 5 years? What if God had chosen to let Lucy's life slip away in those early days of her life? What if we were legitimately floundering financially right now? What if your mom dies from cancer? What if your husband loses his job? What if you receive that terrifying phone call? What if your story doesn't turn out the way you hoped and prayed it would?
Why do we only respond with "God is good" when we get our happy ending?
Listen, I feel like the Holy Spirit punched me in the gut with that question as I was listening to the radio the other day. I'm not here to shame anyone for saying "God is good" in response to a story with a happy ending. Because yes, He is good, and He continually reveals His goodness to us even when we don't deserve it. But if these miracle stories are what we are waiting for to be reminded of His goodness, then our faith is standing on some shaky quaky ground.
Before I lost my mom to cancer 3 1/2 years ago, I thought I had the faith that we sing about:
"In oceans deep, my faith will stand."
"God whatever comes my way, I will trust you."
(I was going to list several lyric examples here, but my brain is failing me on this early morning... you get the point)
But then suddenly I was in the midst of those deep waters, and I definitely was not standing. I was not trusting. I was flailing and sinking and doubting.
And I was questioning His goodness.
All because I didn't get my "miracle story."
You see, God proved His goodness for me and for all mankind thousands of years ago when Jesus died on the cross for us. For me. For you. He didn't have to provide a way for salvation. He would have been completely just to let us perish. But out of His infinite love and mercy, He chose to save us. To save me. To save you. Out of His goodness.
That alone should be proof enough that HE IS GOOD.
The day my mom was diagnosed with ovarian cancer, He was still good.
The day my mom died, He was still good.
The day we received that horrifying news of Lucy's heart defect, He was still good.
The point I'm getting at is this:
I want to be utterly convinced of God's goodness regardless of my current circumstances.
(I'll also be honest and say I'm not quite there yet.)
It's okay (and good) to see His goodness when things do turn out the way we hope and pray. I think God is so gracious in giving us those reminders. But may our hope not be anchored in the results of our current circumstances.
May our hope be anchored in Jesus Christ alone and the work He accomplished on the cross, for we have been given a hope for the future and a reminder for our current and past circumstances, sure and steady, that God is good.