Happy New Year – Is God Still Good?

Hello blogging world! It’s been just about forever since I’ve made an appearance, and my apologies for that. Not that it’s a good excuse, but between the holidays, being pregnant, and then dealing with some unwell-ness I’m afraid getting online was a bit of a last priority :/

Survival was more the theme 😉

But I have been slowly working on the post below, and so without further adieu, I present my (somewhat late) New Years musings:

As it does for most people, the beginning of a new year always causes me to pause and reflect.

A year is a long time, with lots of calendar space for new beginnings, adventures, ups, and of course downs.

2017 certainly filled up those empty spaces, and while there were many wonderful things that happened, there were also many difficult things that happened.

Continued health battles within my own family, the passing of a dear family friend, job difficulties, the list goes on.

Even watching from as an outsider other people filling up their calendar space with unasked for trials. Sick kids requiring hospitalization, struggles with infertility, the death of a (very) young man, although not unexpected, that was still hard to witness.

This list goes on too.

And it seems easy to reflect back on the joyous moments of the year and celebrate, even to be thankful. Thankful for happy times and smooth sailing.

But reflecting on the less joyous times I confess often gives me pause.

It seems like those lows were pretty low.

Those down times went pretty far down.

And I find, for myself at least, it becomes easy to start questioning.

Why is this happening?

Why is this happening to me?

Why is this happening to so and so?

And, again for me at least, I can find myself questioning the goodness of it all.

After all, what good can come from the premature passing of a friend?

Where is the happy in continued health struggles?

How can this difficult situation be any positive for anyone?

Where is God in all this?

Why did He let this happen?

It’s not fair. It’s too hard.

I admit this is a mindset I find myself falling into much too easily.

Especially this past year.

Not so much whether or not God is good, but if He is good all the time.

Even when I don’t like what is happening.

Is God still good even in those low lows?

Is God still good when I am struggling?

The answer of course, is yes.

But sometimes getting that truth from my head to my heart is harder than it should be.

Sometimes in the middle of enduring or witnessing suffering and difficultly and pain my gut reaction is to pull away.

To start to question the goodness of God.

To doubt Him.

Where did He go wrong?

But here’s the thing.

If I keep down that path of doubt and frustration, and even sometimes anger, I find myself feeling like I am spiraling completely out of control.

Like I’m falling down that big black hole of nothingness.

But when I run back to God?

When I cling to Jesus like the life preserver I so desperately need?

Things start to make sense again.

The crazy out-of-control spiral calms.

Because here’s the other thing.

God IS still good.

Despite everything.

INspite of everything, actually.

Now, this doesn’t mean I suddenly like or understand or want what’s happening.

Clinging to my Savior during those hard times doesn’t suddenly make cancer “easy,” or death “fun,” or really any difficult situation more “ideal.”

What it does do however, is help me remember that this world doesn’t follow my agenda.

That my plans really don’t matter.

I know, it seems strange to find comfort in that.

But it rights my world again when I remember that there is someone else in control.

And that the someone else is good, and just, and loves me.

And that in the midst of hardship and heartache and struggle….

….He’s never going to leave me.

And that during those low lows, I can remember that even if I cannot understand it (and I often don’t), there IS a plan.

No, it’s not my plan.

But it’s a good plan.

I’ve watched what I would deem devastating circumstances turn into the most beautiful testimonies.

I’ve seen people with strength I didn’t know possible, that pulls them through even when they are certain they will fail.

And it continues to remind me that no, this is not MY plan.

But at the end of it all,

Even if I don’t ever see it,

There is goodness.

And justice.

And peace.

So I guess to answer my own question, yes, despite it all, God IS still good.

No, that doesn’t make it easy.

It doesn’t even mean that I immediately cling to Him when things get hard.

But I can ALWAYS circle back, because He is good.

And I think I am most thankful for that as we start this new year.

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