Day 68-16 – Providence

Today might have been one of my most “normal” days since all of this started. I got up and read Psalms and Proverbs with my four youngest kids. Then after a quick coffee and shower went to a couple of meetings at our church, followed by lunch, then another meeting, then the opportunity to attend my sons’ middle school football game (lost) and my daughter’s high school soccer game (lost). Squeezed in there was a quick lunch and a quick dinner. It felt strangely nice to have a little normalcy. The other part of my return to a “typical” day however was preparing to do what I get the opportunity to do four or five times a year, the chance to preach in my church. I never take lightly the privilege of standing before our congregation and sharing what God has laid on my heart. Needless to say, based on these last 68 days, God has laid a lot on my heart. So this one act in my regular day, forced me to confront much of what I’ve wrestled with during the course of our storm.

If you happen to be reading this and attend Lake City, then you’ll actually get a little preview into my sermon this weekend. (By the way, I would be remiss if I didn’t extend an invitation to anyone living in the Lakewood area that doesn’t have a church home) The word for the day and really the word for the last couple of months is this word Providence. According to dictionary.com providence is: the foreseeing, care, and guidance of God or nature over the creatures of the earth… or God, especially when conceived as omnisciently directing the universe and the affairs of humankind with wise benevolence. I’m not sure what all that means. But I think it is saying that Providence as it applies to God, is when a good (benevolent) God directs humankind. If you’ve been with us since the beginning, then you know that that has been the wrestling match all along.

On the one hand, we believe (and I’m talking about me) that God is good. The bible says God is love. The gospel message is of a God that willingly chose to become a man (Jesus) and suffer unbelievably, in order to rescue us from ourselves. On the other hand we have all these children (including Justus) suffering in the hospital. So if God is good… then Providence says He’s directing the affairs of mankind (including these sick children). So it seems to me (and again, I’m no philosopher) there are really only about three options… 1) God doesn’t care about these sick kids (but then He wouldn’t be good) 2) God cares, but he’s unable to do anything about it (but that would mean He doesn’t have the power to direct the affairs of man) or 3) He’s good and He’s directing the affairs of man in a way that we can’t fully understand.

And of course, my worldview insures that I believe #3. God is able and God is good. And when one of those two don’t seem obvious, then the moon is round… God is still sovereign, but His ways are higher than our ways. The atheist would probably say that I’m delusional and making my worldview fit whatever I need it to fit. And there is some fairness to that accusation. However, throughout this journey, there have been too many little glimpses of God(See yesterday’s post on God sightings). I know He’s real… not a blind faith… because there are many evidences pointing to God and pointing to the validity of God’s word and pointing to the veracity of Jesus’ birth, death, and resurrection. But there is a faith element, regardless of our worldview.

I could go on, but then what would I preach about on Sunday? My point tonight is, considering Providence has given me a giant reminder of our #TeamJustus journey. Thanks for being with us along the way. Thanks for praying for our little one… I know some of you prayed without fully even understanding why or whom you were praying to. I trust Providence has played a role in your life during this storm. Regardless of where you are with God, I pray you have sensed His presence at times these last several weeks. You’ve made a difference in our family’s life and you’ve made a difference in Justus’ life. He continues to be strong throughout the cold. He’s getting better and keeps improving every day. We continue to pray for surgery date and managing secretions. We have so much to be thankful for. In our state (Washington) we are reeling from some very sad news surrounding three football players that suffered injury and one of them death. Please pray for Kenney Bui’s family, for David Young, and Ramon Angel Oros. We choose to trust a sovereign God. A God that is able. A God that is good… and a moon that is always round. It’s round in the midst of our storms… and thankfully, it’s even round on those average, typical, normal days.