I am so sorry that I was not able to post the photos I hoped to on Friday. I had great intentions of doing so. My daughter, Susanna, and I spent an hour or so trying to figure out how to retrieve pictures from Facebook, then move them to WordPress. We actually managed that, but couldn’t figure out from there how to insert text. One of these days I will try again…

Oh, dear. An interruption. My husband, John, just walked into the kitchen with a doll jacket, looking like a doily, on his head. He says he has finally decided to embrace the concept of mutual submission….

But on to something more serious:

Some time ago I spent a few hours with three Christian sisters. We sat around a table chatting about whatever came to mind. We touched on many issues, including biographical details about our families of origin. I enjoy learning about others, hearing their stories. It was only later that day that I began to really process our conversation. And I was amazed at what I put together.

Four Christian friends, all married. So we were talking about events in eight original families –  our own and the families we had married into. And we discussed only the most major of major events. That is, life and death issues. How many suicides do you think had touched our little group? Four that were mentioned. And one of those was possibly an unproven murder. And there was an ‘accident’ in one family that was possibly another murder.

As I think it over, I still can’t believe it. So much chaos, confusion, evil, heartbreak and sorrow among a very few people. And we didn’t even touch on issues of divorce, adultery, or sexual abuse. Or more ‘ordinary’ sources of suffering – depression, wayward children, vocational frustrations, economic concerns, loneliness…

What a fallen, fallen, fallen world we live in!

The Bible tells us that “Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints.” And we know our sufferings are equally precious to the One who doesn’t “willingly bring affliction or grief to the sons of men.”

David said that God “kept count of his tossings” and asked him to “put my tears in your bottle.”

What a vast, vast bottle that has to be.

I am amazed at God, at the beauty of his character. But I am also amazed by his children and the faithfulness and beauty of their characters. So much suffering but not one woman there who doesn’t love him and trust him from the bottom of her heart.

As Christians, we certainly don’t ‘get’ his providence but we know Him.

And that makes all the difference.