I haven’t talked to God yet. I’m mad at Him and not ready to hear what He has to say. I know He wants to talk, I can feel His presence near and He sneaks in whispers of encouragement. I just don’t have the strength to speak back yet and He is ok with that.

Some may wonder how I can still believe in God after such a tragedy. If my faith was based on a mental agreement to a religion that describes what God is like and what is right and wrong then I most certainly would have abandoned the very concept of a loving God. But I don’t have a religion, I have experienced for myself the powerful, intimate, overwhelming love of God. I know the feel of His presence. I know the sound of His voice. I know without the slightest doubt that He loves me because I have experienced it time and time again.

There have been two seasons of my life in the past where I felt overwhelmed by emotional pain and darkness. Once in my late teens, I contemplated suicide, and the other, in the early part of my marriage I contemplated divorce. Both seasons felt like there would be no end to the darkness I was in. I was mad at God then too. There was a moment in one of those seasons when I could not even stand to be in worship on Sunday mornings. After 15 minutes or so I would leave and wander the halls until it was over (worship at this church lasted at least an hour). Finally one Sunday I prayed, “God, I don’t want to hear from you now, but I still need you.” He didn’t speak a word, but I felt Him come and wrap me in his presence. It felt just like when I was a kid and needed a hug from my dad. The way a father’s arms surround you and all you feel is warmth and you can hear the sound of his heart beating. It was exactly like that. So every Sunday for weeks He hugged me during worship. He loved me the way I needed to be loved to make it through to other side.

I made it through both of those seasons solely because of God’s personal love for me. I can look back on those dark seasons and say, God was with me the whole time and God is good. So even though right now I feel robbed, cheated, and lied to by Him, I know those feelings will fade as I allow myself to be loved by Him once more. Eventually, I will be able to look back at this dark dark season I am in and say with confidence that God was with me the whole time and God is good.