“Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for His compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness.” – Lamentations 3:22-23

This has always been my “go-to” verse for when my sin is right up in my face. For the times that I knew I had messed up; when the dirtiness and filth of my flesh was fully externalized. There are several seasons of my life where this verse continued to remind me that I WAS a child of God and that He WAS transforming me in His time. This morning, however, God made me aware of a deeper truth to these verses.
His compassions never fail. Dictionary.com defines compassion as: “A feeling of deep sympathy and sorrow for another who is stricken by misfortune, accompanied by a strong desire to alleviate the suffering.” One of the antonyms they list for compassion is indifference.
First off, what does the Lord have deep sympathy and sorrow for each of us? What are our misfortunes? You tell me. For some of us, those might be things that we could have prevented. Sins that we committed knowingly. Moments that replay in our brains over and over again, praying and hoping that a re-do button   would show up. For others, our current misfortunes take a different turn. Sickness within the family or ourselves. The diagnosis that keeps getting worse. The depression that just won’t go away. The cries for a spouse or a baby that continue to go unanswered. All of these can be considered misfortunes. And Lamentations promises us that God has ACTIVE sympathy and sorrow for us in the midst.
The second half of the definition is the part that tugs at my heart strings the most. It says that this feeling is accompanied by “a strong desire to alleviate the suffering”. This is where our trust comes in. Friends, not only does God see your misfortunes, He wants to make it better. He is fully aware of what you are going through, and He desires to relieve that suffering. In our sin, He continues to bring us His grace and forgiveness EACH morning. As the sun rises, it is a fresh reminder that He is for us and is giving us yet another chance to remember Him in all we do. In those misfortunes that keep us perpetually intuitive to the fact that the world we live in is a broken one full of suffering, let us not forget that He is NOT indifferent. He desires to relieve us of this suffering, whether in this life or the next. If He continues to allow you to feel the pain, He promises us that it is for a reason. And the hope of this verse is that we would begin each day with a new understanding of this compassion that the Lord has for us. Regardless of if your misfortunes are self-inflicted or simply a part of being a human being, He is right there with you in it. His compassions NEVER fail, and He will not let your suffering end in vain. Because He’s for you. Because He is the Great Alleviator of all of our pain as we lay it at His feet. Because He is faithful. 

No words.

You know that “youth conference feeling”? The one where you are singing with hundreds of people and the speaker has really brought the Gospel, and tons and tons of youth (including yourself) are coming up to the front of the room to pray? That emotional, tear-jerking moement where you and a hundred of your (now) friends are realizing God really is all that matters, all together? (Some of you are nodding, some of you just confused. Just trust me on this one.) I have that feeling right now. Except I am by myself, in a coffee shop, age 26; and the only thing speaking to me is God’s word and His still, sweet voice. The place He currently has me on this journey…my, it is sweet.
I can smell the honeysuckles after a summer rain, feel the embrace of a warm fire on a winter’s night; experience the security of being wrapped up in a towel right after it has left the dryer. This is how my life feels right now. I realize I’m not making 100% sense right now, and I’m okay with that. Some seasons of life are like “inside jokes” with the Lord, and this is the beginning of one of those seasons for myself. This morning, I am aware of one of the many rewards that comes with walking through this life with the Lord. He has brought me to a place where His provision does not seem like a foreign truth; it is right in my face. And friends: there are no words; which is why I’m stumbling across this computer board attempting to express my gratitude to Him. I want to give Him glory by sharing with you all. We may not be in an auditorium, praising Him all together in some beautiful song, but the concept is still the same. He has brought me to my knees the past few weeks, and I feel giddy inside about all that is to come.
           “Great is thy faithfulness, Great is thy faithfulness, morning by morning new mercies I see; all I have needed thy hand hath provided; great is thy faithfulness, Lord unto me!”
I see the Lord, sitting up on His mighty throne, smiling… and not just today, but in the days before; knowing the joy I was going to experience as He poured out unnumerable blessings in His perfectly orchestrated time. I know, I know. Even what seems like suffering is a blessing. May I rejoice in those times, too. But oh, to enter into a time of “jumping in the air, carefree praise” for the Lord. He deserves this always; but I want to give it to Him (as I am so aware of it) today. I know that a more difficult season could be just around the bend, and I’m okay with that. Because I trust Him; and I know that He is confidently leading me into still waters with every passing winter or storm. Because He is God. Because He is good. Because He is for us.
I must make one thing clear: this has nothing to do with me or my efforts to be a “good” Christian: been there, done that, failed miserably. I do not serve Him as I should or love through His love on a daily basis. I go back and forth in my trusting in and leaning on to Him; but He never lets me go because He knows my heart and because He never changes. Morgan is nothing outside of His hold on my life.
Whatever your circumstances, whatever is going on in your life, however you view God, hear my authentic plea: walking with Him makes ANY season sweeter; the ups, the downs, the in-betweens. When you do choose to hold on to His grasp on you in the midst of trying times… the aftermath is that much more wonderful. He is smiling down on YOU today, on us. He sees the big picture, and it is good. Let’s celebrate Him together.