Life was at one of it’s most bleak points, with serious illness in the family, financial difficulties I couldn’t see my way past, and I was exhausted beyond words. I cried out to God one evening, and the words came right back to me, “Sorrow may last for a night, but joy comes in the morning.”
I heard the letterbox rattle the next morning, and fully expected some remarkable answer to come through it. It was a holiday postcard from a woman named Joy, who I’d only met once, and had exchanged Christmas cards with. No answers. Was this God’s idea of a joke – the ‘Joy’ coming in the morning? Looking back, I can see it was a wonderful promise that the misery would not last for ever; but at the time, I didn’t want a promise, I wanted change, answers, solutions.
There are times we experience remarkable liftings, healings and sparings, like David in Psalm 30 verses 1-3, and to these we testify, and praise God with gusto. But sometimes we have to hang on, in faith, and believe that joy will come, that sorrow will be replaced with dancing, that we will sing again.
Yesterday, in an English mid-January, I noticed a single rose blossoming on dead-looking branches. That is the dogged resilience we need. But it’s only ever developed in times of difficulty. And you know you’ve got it when you can say, “O Lord my God, I will give you thanks FOR EVER.” No matter what.