Sadly, a couple of months ago my best friend's father passed away. His death came suddenly and somewhat unexpectedly. Needless to say, my friend and her family members and friends were left completely brokenhearted, missing this man whom they loved. As I sat in the services and listened to the family speak of this man -- this father, this husband, this grandpa, this coach, this mentor, this friend -- I noticed this phrase used over and over by different individuals: "He was there."
This hasn't left me since that time in December. I keep pondering "He was there." I cannot help but think of Jesus and of this amazing truth: "He was there." He was there when I was formed in the inward parts of my mother's womb; my frame was not hidden from Him (see Ps. 139:13-15). He was there before I knew Him, while I was still dead in my trespasses (see Eph. 2:5). He was there with Joseph in the Old Testament when he was sold as a slave by his brothers in Egypt: "And his master saw that the Lord was with him and that the Lord made all he did to prosper in his hand" (Gen. 39:3). He was still there when Joseph was later falsely accused of rape and thrown into prison: "And his master saw that the Lord was with him and that the Lord made all he did to prosper in his hand" (Gen. 39:23). This fact is stated throughout many Old Testament accounts: in the life of Jonah (yes even while in the belly of the fish) (see Jonah 2:1-10), in the life of Samuel (see 1 Sam. 3:19), in the life of David (see 1 Sam. 18:14); the list goes on! We are introduced to this promised child, Jesus, quickly in the New Testament as Immanuel, God with us: "Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and bear a Son, and they shall call His name Immanuel, which is translated, 'God with us'" (Matt. 1:23). Jesus remained here and was with us in the flesh (see John 1:1). After He was crucified and resurrected, He was still with Peter and the apostles as they preached the gospel (see Acts 11:21). Again, the list goes on! He even gave us a promise that He would remain with us always, even to the end of the age (see Matt. 28:20).
As I look back again on the memorial service I mentioned and think of the heartfelt expressions that were spoken by each one who repeated, "He was there," I believe them. Do I believe this about the Lord? My best friend's father was there, he was there for many things that were important to each individual. He never failed to be there in order to express his love for them. I sat there and thought, This was true of You, Lord, and still is true. You love us with an unfailing love, and You will never fail to be there through the things that are important to us, through the mountains and the valleys, even in death (see Ps. 139:8), You will be there. You promised.
"Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; For You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me" (Ps. 23:4).
Ladies, we are greatly loved; we are told throughout Scripture. We are beloved of the Father. We, too, can remember and proclaim with confidence, "He was there!" That "He is here. He is Immanuel, God with us!"
For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord (Rom. 8:38-39).
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Posted Apr 08, 2013 03:34:11 PM by Laura Sowers
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