God stays the same. Always. Always good, always merciful, always full of compassion. God doesn't change. It helps me to remember this. It really does. Because my tiny human understanding can feel abandoned or punished or lost when things aren't going my way. God, do You love me? and the answer is always yes.
But, lost in my own understanding of things I forget. I lose my way. I hurt, and lack trust. At least I do for a while. When the storm is raging I need to hunker down and feel my feelings of despair. As the storm starts to diminish I start to reflect and question my reaction. Why am I so willing to think that I am abandoned, that I don't measure up, that nothing will ever go right and nobody cares about me because I am essentially unlovable?
I am lovable to God. Sometimes there is a lot I can learn from the storms and trials. Sometimes I learn compassion. I am growing in trust for God. God is there for me, just not a fairy Godfather protector, defender, and fixer. Troubles happen. And God is still speaking to me, calling me out of my self absorbed self pity, calling me to holiness. Calling me to love.
And the other day during the height of my sad, lonely, abandoned, frustrated feelings when I thought I could never smile again and I deserved all the bad things that were happening to me, I noticed that when I cleaned up the breakfast dishes I had unknowingly dropped a piece of banana peel on the floor where I walk to do the dishes. When I saw it, I had the immediate feeling that God was telling me a joke about slipping on a banana peel and I smiled.
Life isn't about waiting for things to go my way and to get the things I want. God wants me to enjoy it all, feel it all, even the sad parts. They make the joy greater when it comes. God is the same, always. God is love, even or especially in my darkest hour.