This morning’s devotion, which brings near the heart of doubt in the places of suffering, comes from Sean Norris.

Who among all these does not know that the hand of the LORD has done this?  In his hand is the life of every living thing and the breath of all mankind.

My wife laid on the table as the doctor passed the transducer back and forth on her stomach.  We sat silently watching the screen and listening for the sound of hope, listening for that little fast-paced heart beat.  But there was nothing.  No blip on the screen and no evidence of life.  Just silence.

For the past eight weeks or so we had been elated.  Finally, after over a year of trying there were two lines on the pregnancy test instead of one!  We went to the doctor’s office, and it was confirmed, we were pregnant.  Prior to that news, we had reached the point of facing the very painful reality that we may not be able to have children.  It was a scary thought, but with that pregnancy test it was gone.  We praised God for this answer to prayer, for this baby.  It was a renewal of hope.  But these moments of silence during the ultrasound that day seized our joy.  The doctor told us that it was very likely that we would miscarry.

So what this time?  What did we do wrong?  What caused this?  Who has answers?  Heartbroken and furious, the hardest part was that there was nothing to do.  There were no answers to our questions.  There was just the shadowy revelation that, like Job when faced with catastrophe, the LORD had done this when his hand was supposed to preserve the life of all things, the breath of all mankind. “He’s got the whole world in his hands”?

This is enough to crush the faith in you and to leave nothing left but resentment.  It is a death, and there is no coping mechanism lasting enough for it.  When you’re faced with the shadow side of the reality that life is not yours to give or to hold onto, there is only one question left to helplessly ask, and that is, “But, is God giving life? And is He trustworthy?”

Nothing you’re going through tells you He is.  There’s no evidence that you can point to in the physical world around you that is going to satisfy.  There is only one thing that can stand up to our real sufferings, to loss, to cancer, to miscarriages.  That is His own final death for us. His suffering making sense of ours.  His pain speaking into our pain and the promise in His resurrection that death does not and will not have the final word.