I don't think I'll ever forget it. I won't tell his story because I don't know much of it and it isn't mine to tell. But a small bit of the story I think is mine. He had suffered from illness for awhile, in fact, I believe he was diagnosed just a few months before I found out that I too was being attacked by cancer. The last Sunday that I saw him was probably his last to attend church before he went home to heaven. He had been talking to my husband, and I walked up to greet him. His last words to me were simple but heart felt. He looked into my eyes and with deep peace simply said, "God is good ALL the time." I wanted to grab his arm and talk to him. I wanted to share what God had been teaching me thru my hardships - to truly delight in God no matter the circumstances. I wanted to hear exactly what God had been teaching him because it was apparent he had learned some lessons as well. However, I could tell his energy was lagging and that he needed to leave, so I simply agreed with him, God is indeed good all the time.
I saw a quote not long ago by Graham Cooke:
After all, My God IS good ALL THE TIME - yes, even in my celebration. How sad is it that I hesitate to tell good news because of other's discomfort in declaring God's glory? Look at God's work in my life! See what He has done! He is all powerful! He is my Delight in good times and bad. He is Jehovah Rapha - The Lord Who Heals. He is El Roi - The God Who Sees! And this time He has seen fit to see me, to heal me! My doctors were so sure that cancer had again attacked my body that they had plans in motion for treatments after my surgery. BUT GOD. On my way to the appointment to see the surgeon after surgery, I received the call that the pathology report showed no cancer. I believe God healed me. Since He can see me, work miracles in my life and love me, He can do the same for you -no matter your circumstances. Just as God walked with our church friend and carried him though his time of illness, God walked with me. God was good then and He is good now. Praise HIM! If I could talk to that friend again, I would thank him for so gently reminding me when he knew I was waiting and hurting - "God is good ALL the time."
One of my favorite stories in the Bible recently has been the story of Moses in Exodus 33. Moses was pleading for God's favor for the Israelite people and then he asks God, "Show me Your glory!" God tells Moses to come to the cleft of a rock and passes before him, protectively covering Moses with His hand until He had passed by. As God took His hand away Moses could see the back of God. In Ex. 34:6-7 " God was jumping up and down, dancing - perhaps throwing his hands in the air celebrating Himself as He delightedly declared to Moses, "The Lord, the Lord God, compassionate and gracious...!!" My challenge to you is to not be hesitant to declare God's glory in fear of hurting others, but to be like God Himself, jubilantly celebrating His glory and goodness and thereby encouraging those in pain.