“The LORD is close to the broken-hearted
and saves those who are crushed in spirit.
I was involved in a particularly tragic funeral recently. It was heart-breaking to see again some who were broken-hearted, others who were totally crushed, those who were cocooned in numbness and others quite bewildered. Quite terrible were the ‘sightless eyes’ looking into a future that was unbearably unimaginable. Here and there were a few who knew that somehow in it all God was with them and would carry them through.
Devastating pain comes in many forms. Sometimes it results from some unforeseen event. At other times it might be caused by other persons or may even be due to our own actions and failures. However in all circumstances the pain and confusion is very real and as we grapple with it we may begin to realise that life may never be the same again. Whilst the love and comfort of others can be a great blessing we often cry out for something that will reach into the very heart of the agony and loss and hold us with total and endless understanding whilst we cry it out.
The Lord is close – and if there is one person who totally understands our particular loss and pain then He does. He relates so closely to us that He could say that whatever was done or not done to those He loved was as if it were done to Him. Isaiah also tells us that
“Surely he took up our infirmities and carried our sorrows … he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed.”
The pain that He suffered and endured was not just that of an unbelieving world and the callousness of brutal soldiers. It was our pain – your pain – my pain – taken into Himself and suffered with us and for us out of His great and wonderful love. It enables Him to say to us in all honesty and truthfulness – “I know”, “I was there”, “I am here in the midst of it with you.”
It is because of this that His great cry has so much integrity and love and hope within it.
“Come unto me, all [you] that labour and are heavy laden,
and I will give you rest”
He is the One who is both willing and able to walk us through this terrible, dark and lonely emptiness. He will help us to find new life and a new peace with Him, in Him and through Him. He can save us.
Now is the time to ensure that I am close to Him and He to me
Thank You Lord Jesus for Your promise to be with us – to be with me – always. Help me please to be always aware of You and to turn to You in all things for Your help, direction, comfort and strength. Amen.