Last year this time I was sitting on the bathroom floor – crying. I remember it vividly. It was the first in my life that I wasn’t able to be with my family (particular my mom) on Thanksgiving. My immediate family is small and I’m extremely close with my mother. Even though I would be having dinner with my 2 best friends who are more like sisters, I was upset.
This is difficult time of year for me. I lost my dad shortly after thanksgiving when I was fourteen.
As I sat on the floor, trying terribly hard to stop the tears, I started talking (rather whispering) to God. Have you ever felt alone? I mean really alone – like even God was far from you. That’s how I felt; like I would have to endure the pain of the holiday alone. That felt like more than I could bear.
Eventually I calmed myself down, got off of the floor, and begin prepping for the dinner I was cooking. I took my phone out and check Facebook. Earlier that evening I posted a status about cooking my first thanksgiving dinner (#adulting) and it received a bunch of likes and “good luck” comments.
One of my friends, knowing home was only an hour away from where we live, inquired about why I wasn’t going home. After I replied to the comment, my friend called and invited me (and my besties) to his place for thanksgiving. It would be a small dinner with his roommates and immediate family members. It's such a small gesture but it was huge to me.
In that moment I didn’t feel as alone because I knew someone cared. Believe it or not, I knew God cared. Somehow I knew He was showing his love and concern for me through my friend’s dinner invitation. I started to cry again but this time out of joy. I'm so grateful for that invitation; grateful that he took out the time to notice my need.
Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his. - 1 john 4:11-12
God is always closer than we realize, often in ways we don’t recognize. As the verse above says, “If we love one another God lives in us”. If you feel desolate, and wondering where God is in the midst of your pain - I promise you he's there. He's with you when it's hard, when it's confusing, when your hurting, and when it seems like your prayers are hitting deaf ears. It's not obvious to us at first, but He's always revealing himself to us.
Sometimes as that still small voice that whispers to our soul, or in the thoughtfulness of a friend, or the kindness of a stranger. However it may come, one thing is certain - He is always with us. We just need to open our eyes to see how.