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  • Writer's picturePhil Rains

Goodness of God

As I write this, it is 1:00am on August 9th, and I am lying next to my wife who is struggling with every breath to stay alive. Today is our 53rd wedding anniversary. I’m afraid there may not be much celebration. We raised 4 wonderful sons, have 3 unbelievable daughters in law, and 4 perfect grandchildren (that’s how Dreama describes them. Well, me too). We were sitting on our porch (Dreama’s favorite place) the other night, and we were talking about how good God has been to us. So I pulled up what has been our favorite song for some months now, “The Goodness of God”, and we sat and listened and worshipped. It sounds so simple, doesn’t it. Maybe too simple you’d say.

We live in a world of superlatives. Everything has to be the biggest, the best, the fastest, the loudest. We over use, and misuse words like “AMAZING” or “MARVELOUS.” Everyone has become a hero. From doctors to ditch diggers, we have elevated everyone to such a lofty place for simply doing their job. We want to make everything more than what it is, assuming that it’s not enough as what it was.

But, somewhere in between this made-up, hyped-up existence, and the Eeyore world in which some choose to exist, there is that great space where most of us live our day to day lives. It’s neither Everest nor Death Valley. It’s just there where life is lived. It seems as if we have lost the ability to appreciate the middle ground.

Now don’t take me wrong, no one appreciates those high, emotional moments any more than I do. But how much of our lives are spent in that rarified air? To grapple with the dust and dirt of daily life, and come out on the other side still intact, makes it more comfortable to simply say “I’m good.” Not as flashy as some would want, but it fits—-“I’m good.”

But then comes the issue of applying it to God. Some want it to be more flashy, grandiose. After all, we must be careful with His image, His brand. But there are those times when we’ve been through the valley, we’ve fought the battle, we’ve faced the enemy. Those times when we come out of the battle scarred and bone weary. It’s at that moment that we stop and take a breath, and the words just come out; God is good. No hype needed, no flash needed, no concern for branding, just a genuine

expression of the soul, God is good.

I know all the words, and phrases, and theological expressions that are used to describe the greatness of God. I, in no way, would want to diminish their importance with my words here. They are all necessary to talk of God’s nature. But sometimes the simplicity of my soul just cries out, “God is good.”

I’m still lying here listening to my wife’s labored breathing. I don’t fully know what the next few minutes will look like, not to mention the next few days and years. But what comes to my mind at this very pivotal time in my life, is that porch conversation we had about God’s goodness.

So much is expressed with such a simple word.

(Update: Dreama passed just hours after writing this post - and God is still Good.)

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