When You're STILL Suffering
“Weeping may tarry for the night, but joy comes with the morning.” Psalm 30:5b (ESV)
Over the last two years, our family has been through incredibly hard things: a marriage rescued from the brink of failure, the physical death of several family members, and the miscarriage of our darling daughter Eilise. I have suffered like never before. In some ways, I am still suffering.
Last April, my husband Robert and I had the privilege of spending time away together. We were able to come alongside people from across the United States who were also facing huge challenges and glean wisdom from many who’ve walked this path ahead of us.
It was there, in the middle of nowhere among the trees and the nature trails, that the Lord so sweetly helped me better understand the words of His servant, David. He was no stranger to sorrow, and those words finally settled into my heart, soothing the very raw places.
“Weeping may tarry for the night, but joy comes with the morning” (Psalm 30:5b).
In the midst of my pain, I found myself questioning the legitimacy of this well-known Scripture. I cried out many times, “Sorrow is supposed to only last for a night, joy is supposed to come in the morning! That’s what Your Word says. So why is the pain dragging on? Why do Your children sometimes struggle for days, months or even years?”
I’d forgotten what it's like to watch the sunrise. I expected morning to come in an instant. I believed my sorrow should disappear altogether — and all at once.
But that’s not how morning works. The sun doesn't suddenly appear in the sky. The world doesn't transition from dark to light abruptly.
During the night of weeping, the darkness is overwhelming, suffocating and disorienting. And, more often than not, it gets darker before day breaks.
Then, softly and subtly, things begin to change. The world is more grey than black. We begin to be able to make out the shapes of our surroundings. Our eyes begin to adjust and everything looks just a little bit different.
As we lift our heads, we can distinguish the horizon. It turns a soft shade of pink and color creeps in to the world around us — still dull, but adding color nonetheless.
Then pink turns to orange and the sky gets brighter and brighter. Faster and faster, things are changing.
Before you realize it’s even happened, the sun becomes visible, the birds wake up and sing. The dull colors become sharp and crisp as radiant morning bursts forth and the day begins.
The darkness of night becomes a thing of the past, just a memory. Weeping has been replaced with jubilant song, mourning turns to dancing, and sorrow at last gives way to joy.
Yes, there will be reminders of what happened in the dark. But, once exposed to the light, these reminders have no power, and they cause no fear.
In my own journey, the sun is almost out. So, let this be an encouragement for anyone who might still be hurting. Whether you're in the darkest hour, or inching closer to sunrise, look for the grey. Then watch for the pink.
I know you’d probably rather see the sun out right now, but there’s hope — even while it’s still dark. Adjust your eyes to see the small amounts of light that surround you. Knowing that morning always comes eventually, there’s hope that your joy will be fully restored, and you can delight in the small ways your world is brightening.
Before we know it, like David, we'll be able to say: “You have turned for me my mourning into dancing …” (Psalm 30:11a, ESV).
And we'll be dancing in the sunshine.
Heavenly Father, I long to honor You even in my suffering. Help me see Your faithfulness, even when my emotions seem tossed to and fro by grief. Allow me to feel the comfort of the Holy Spirit as I wait for my morning to dawn. And, let Your light shine through me so others would see Your goodness and the Name of Jesus would be made great. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
TRUTH FOR TODAY:
Hosea 6:1, “Come, let us return to the LORD; for he has torn us, that he may heal us; he has struck us down, and he will bind us up.” (ESV)
Hebrews 4:16, “Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.” (ESV)
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REFLECT AND RESPOND:
How is God revealing Himself in your struggle? What are the small, subtle ways His love shows up, like manna in the desert of your mourning?