Thirty five years ago, I was driving east on a joyful Christmas morning over a snowy mountain pass. As I made my descent a vast panorama opened up to snow-blanketed hills stretched out to infinity. Breaking over the horizon was a sunrise painted in a palette of pure pastels. The scale and scope of the beauty was more than my mind could fathom. I wondered at it all. Then in a moment my spirit apprehended a sublime truth—God is good!
That blessed revelation was now gloriously imprinted on my heart. Many before me have seen such wonderful things. King David once saw it and exclaimed:
The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork.
Day unto day uttereth speech, and night unto night sheweth knowledge.
There is no speech nor language, where their voice is not heard.
Their line is gone out through all the earth, and their words to the end of the world.
God’s goodness is revealed in countless ways, but most clearly when he gives his mercy and grace to fallen men. Therefore, I believe that salvation is the greatest gift of all when God gave his Son to pay for our sins on the cross. I have previously shared how God gave his mercy and grace to me here: He Raised My Life From the Dead.
Soon after God gave me salvation, he graciously gave me my wonderful wife Dorothy. Then I learned her name means, “Gift of God.” I now know that;
Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights.
Over the years Dorothy and I have experienced God’s goodness in countless wonderful ways. However in 2018, we discovered that she had stage 3 cancer. Both the diagnosis and treatment processes were harrowing, but after a grueling year it was finally completed. Now this is a type of cancer that can often recur within a year. Just last week, after two years of surveillance, we learned it’s still in remission. We choose to say daily, with hearts full of thanksgiving—God is so good to us!
These and many other good things have revealed God’s goodness to me, however a few years back I had another kind of experience. I was driving on that same stretch of road in the same mountain pass, but now heading west. This time I felt heart-rending pain and a rising level of dread that I just could not manage or make go away. As I traveled west the pain and anxiety only got worse, but then gradually something else arrested my attention. Over the mountains broke the most beautiful sunset I had ever seen in all my life. However, I was deeply troubled by how incongruous this seemed in the moment. I actually felt obligated to shut it out. I thought, “Right now it seems wrong to acknowledge something as beautiful,” so I strained to close myself off, but it’s beams had piercing power to keep breaking through. Like all sunsets, it did finally fade away along with the immediate cause of my emotional distress. However, I continued to wrestle with this for hours on the entire drive home. In fact, I wrestled with my conflicted feelings for months thereafter.
Then, over time, my spirit finally apprehended another sublime truth—No matter what happens…God is still good!
This uninvited revelation is now ingloriously imprinted on my heart. Like so many before me, I must learn to trust God in the midst of trouble because;
The Lord is good, a strong hold in the day of trouble; and he knoweth them that trust in him.
Scripture references from the King James Version of the Bible.