I have not been angry at God about the death of Steve. I've been surprised by this fact. When my father was killed by a drunk driver, I was so angry at God that I started a cold war with Him that lasted for well over a year. My anger left me empty and bitter.
My loss this time is every bit as grueling but multiplied a hundred times. Yet, in place of anger is a shaft of light in the empty blackness of my broken life. Trials and hardships have not made me hard, but more softened because of my faith. My closeness with Christ has knocked off the sharp edges and made me "usable" in His kingdom.
Faith means so many different things to people. My circumstances have taught me much about faith and it's importance. Before I was scorched by misfortune, pain, and suffering, I had a Cinderella belief that my faith secured me a "happily-ever-after." This blind optimism served me well for 36 years.
But we live in a fallen world and all of us, sooner or later, will drink deeply from its sorrows. I have learned that my struggles are important and that, even when there's nothing left but rubble, God is mysteriously at work in the mess. My faith is now grounded in the God who created me and who reveals Himself in creation. My faith has taught me the most important lesson in life: that I must know the God who made me and to walk through this life as His child, no matter what it costs me. Even when I am standing at "ground zero" -- when I am hurting, when God is silent, when my suffering makes no sense, when every option seems a dead end. Faith believes in advance what can only be seen in reverse.
I won't lie...my faith is not as consistent as it needs to be. There are days I feel hopeless. Yet, when I open God's word and drink deeply of His promises, I am revived.
God did not promise me an easy life, just that I wouldn't have to do life alone.