I had two very interesting conversations recently, one with a fellow-blogger, a single believer, trying to find that balance between faith and the nitty gritty need of real life and flesh. The other was with my daughter...actually it was the compilation of numerous conversations that led me to recognize some great and deep truths about us: as humans, as believers, as unbelievers...My daughter is back in her angry, cynical expectation of me leaving her again to go into the hospital… I love her very much and it hurts me to be the cause of her pain. She seems to need me intensely, even as a late teen. She attributes it to my many times away in hospitals, but I don't think that is the only reason. I don’t know why there is no bottom to her need…. Well, really I do…but she would never hear the answer from my lips.She told me the other day that she never feels content…ALWAYS feels some great sense of underlying NEED or WANT of something. I can definitely understand that, having suffered that wordless, aching need for many, many years.
“The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not WANT.” I do not lack anything. If you feel the love of your Father in heaven, that is constantly in you, constantly listening to you and surrounding you, that incredible NEED is satiated and there is that “peace that passes understanding” which cannot be disturbed even by illness or threat of more hospitals. This great dependence we have on our heavenly Father, really gives us independence here on earth. We can tolerate any loss, any “lack” because we have our most basic need filled by Him and His love. That does not mean I love my family any less (I love them MORE) but it means that my sense of well-being doesn’t come from or rely on them. Nor does it free us from the responsibility of taking action to help others, the helpless and destitute with their needs. That is why we are here...to be "God's hand of help and healing to a lost and hurting world," as my church fellowship states it.
For my other friend, it's maybe both harder and easier...Easier because he already has that constant Presence of his Lover/Lord, but he is without the warm body next to him and the listening ear he dreams that a marriage or relationship would give him. Well, several words in that direction: 1) marriage often leaves you lonlier than if you were alone 2) In my marriage, I've had to rely most often on my heavenly Husband even more. To wit: we are all essentially alone, regardless of our level of popularity, integration in a Body of Believers, or relationships...Once we seek and find that God's hand holds ours as we stumble along through our need and hardship, however, we can truly sing with David, "The Lord is my shepherd; I shall lack no good thing.
"for though a righteous man falls seven times, he rises again,
but the wicked are brought down by calamity.
When he falls, he will not be hurled headlong,
Because the LORD is the One who holds his hand.