We hear this all the time, don't we?
~ There is a car wreck, in which Person 1 dies and Person 2 escapes without much damage; and we say that God must have been with Person 2.
~ Our cousin is deathly ill and, after much prayer and medical intervention, finally recovers. We say God was with her and answered our prayers.
~A hurricaine is headed toward our town, and at the last minute changes course and goes in another direction - perhaps toward a different town. We say God spared our town.
But...........wasn't God ALSO with person 1 who did not live? If our cousin had not survived, or survived with many complications, is not God also with her? Did God hear the prayers of OUR town, and ignore the prayers of THEIR town?
Now, this is neither the time or the place to get into theological discussions about theodicy, prayer, or the will of God. Rather, I hope to bring to attention a sort of laziness in our reactions to life situations.
Think about it: Is there a time when God is NOT with us? Doesn't the most beloved hymn in the Bible - the 23rd - talk about valleys of shadow, and presence of enemies, and evil? Did not John the Baptizer get beheaded? Jesus get crucified?
The reality is that bad things happen to good people, and good things happen to bad people, and the rain falls on the just and the unjust. We are not promised a life without danger, toil, trouble, and death. We are, however, promised a Presence that never leaves or forsakes us; a Love that will not let us go; a Comforter that guides us; Strength for today and Bright Hope for tomorrow; a Son that lights our way - through ALL the times of our lives, whether they are good or bad.
And speaking as someone who's gone through a lot of that said trouble and strife, I can bear witness to the truth that IT IS ENOUGH. Truly, God's love, mercy and grace is enough. For us all. For evermore.
Or, as we sang Sunday: Whatever my lot, You have taught me to say 'It is well with my soul.'