She read me my first Junie B. Jones book during one of the many lunch breaks she and Nicki spent in my office that semester. Although at 45 I might have been a little old for Junie B., Beverly’s bubbly excitement and laughter were contagious, as were the many stories she told of her 2 little boys and of the husband who would remain lovingly by her side throughout the long battle she was about to enter. That was the same semester she would learn on her 32nd birthday, more than 5 years ago, that she had acute lymphoctic leukemia. The lunch visits stopped. I drove to Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center to visit her and was able to initiate action for her college tuition to be returned. After that I kept in touch with my bubbly full-of-life student only through her on-line CarePages and through my prayers. She fought hard, and this week her struggle ended.
Salisbury has had more than its share of tragedy the past several weeks. A car accident left a family grieving the loss of a 12-year-old boy. A longboard accident took a 17-year-old. A bee sting took the life of a retired teacher. Others died on motorcycles and in cars. Statewide, nationwide, worldwide, there are other tragedies, like those who died when trees fell on their houses and cars during the sudden derecho storm, or the families of dying soldiers. A friend who lost her job, another her beloved dog, one whose mother is fading with alzheimer's, another who weeps over a child’s drug addiction, gay students whose families have shut them out, cancer victims who are praying for their own miracles, others who are dying slowly of loneliness, wondering why no one looks into their eyes and no one cares. If we know anyone, we know someone who’s hurting, maybe outwardly, maybe silently.
Why? Where is God when we are hurting? Have you ever struggled with this question? Do the usual answers bring you no comfort? Is there anyone who has never asked: Where is the justice? Why do bad things happen to good people? Where is God when life isn't fair? Why me, Lord?
While it is impossible with our finite human minds to understand or answer with certainty the big God questions of life and eternity, I offer here what has worked for me and brings me peace amidst the inevitable sufferings of this world. If it brings you some solace, then it is yours.
Where is God When We're Hurting?