“In all their distress he too was distressed,
and the angel of his presence saved them.
In his love and mercy he redeemed them;
he lifted them up and carried them all the days of old.”
Isaiah 63:9 (NIV)
When my first child, a son, was born it was hard to contain my excitement. I was 29 years old and my younger sister already had three children.
So it was heartbreaking when I had to rush my wife and baby, 4 days old, back to the hospital so my wife could have emergency surgery.
Arrangements were made for a family friend, a nurse at The Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto, to take my son until his mother could come back home to care for him.
After going to the hospital and our friend’s home to drop off my son, I went to our empty house to clean up the unfinished breakfast I had made for my wife, take down the decorations I had put up to celebrate our son’s birth, and just settle down to pity myself.
The opening statement of our verse today was enormously comforting to me. I thought on the fact that when I hurt and feel the sorrows of life my heavenly Father is right at my side feeling the same grief that engulfs my heart and threatens to drown me in sorrow.
We are made in the image of God and so we know that He has an emotional life the same as we have. God wishes his people to understand that He is moved by the same things we are. When God the Son was present at a house of mourning (John 11) He wept with those who wept.
In Matthew 9:36; 14:14; 15:32; 20:34 we read of various scenes where our Lord felt compassion on people for a number of reasons. These, and many other Scriptures, tell us of a God Whose heart is full of love and mercy toward people in pain. I am simple enough to believe that when a person of any age has to put their beloved pet down that God mourns with them—otherwise what do our Lord’s words mean in Matthew 10:29,31 (NIV)
“Are not two sparrows sold for a penny?
Yet not one of them will fall to the ground outside your Father’s care.
So don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.”
Whatever your care this day—from something as momentous as the death of a child to the passing of your pet—the Lord knows all about it and He comes to minister grace to those who believe in Him and look for a compassionate loving Father’s support.
Do not let Satan lie to you and say that God does not care about you or your issues in life. Away with such nonsense and ungodly thoughts. He Who attends the death of a sparrow values you so very much more and is ready, willing and able to comfort you and listen to your pain. Come to Him today. He is waiting for you.