Another new year has come.
I recently saw a cartoon that sort of summarizes the passage of time. In the first frame the children are moping around, looking at each other, and finally one says, “I can’t believe Christmas is taking so long to get here.” In the very next frame, Mom and Dad are frantically scurrying about when one says to the other, “I can’t believe Christmas is coming so fast.”
And that is about the size of it. When we were younger the days and weeks and months crept along. We could hardly wait for Christmas, for our 13th birthday, our 16th birthday, graduation, and on it goes. And today I hardly want to acknowledge the birthdays that seem to come every other month.
And yet the new year has come. I have to be honest with you, I am hoping for a better 2014 than 2013. For those who read this column, you are aware that 2013 was not easy for the Butler family. Our youngest son was involved in a catastrophic accident that has left him paralyzed. And then my mother-in-law fell and broke her elbow in the midst of his rehabilitation. My wife and I spent far too much time in hospitals last year.
But in the midst of crisis I can tell you this: God is good. His goodness did not stop on the day my son’s work truck had a tire blow out. His goodness did not stop the day my mother-in-law tripped. And his goodness did not stop at any moment in crisis in your life either.
When you begin to doubt the goodness or the love of God, I have only one thing to say to you: Remember the cross. It was at Calvary that God made this declaration so loudly and clearly, “I love you.” When Jesus went to the cross, he expressed the love and mercy and grace of God for all mankind. It is settled forever. God is love.
I want to encourage you to trust in the Lord, no matter the circumstances in which you find yourself. He really is good. He can be trusted. Look beyond your circumstances and know that God is walking with you.
The Bible does not promise an easy life. The Bible does not guarantee perfect health or great wealth. But the Bible does make this declaration: “I will never leave you nor forsake you,” says the Lord. You can count on that.
God is with you. And that is enough.