After the storms cleared and the clouds had blown past, I started up the van and began driving towards home. I have lived in Charleston for several years, but still don't call it home. I passed Arcola, with two semis blown over. I felt like the Levite and priest in the Good Samaritan parable as I blew past, watching the other cars that had stopped before me to check on the drivers.
Next came Pesotum, with debris littered across a field, looking like a metal bin had exploded, sending strips of metal ricocheting, wrapping itself around guardrails on the interstate. I thought of our friends in Washington, whose home was spared, and Greg's other co-worker whose home was not spared and a landscape of leveled homes, with families in shock and not sure where to even begin.
That night, I sat in an old church lit with candles and listened to Sara Groves sing "Open My Hands". The lyrics "He withholds no good thing from us" bounced around the walls of my mind. It is an age old question with no easy answer. Why does He allow it to happen? Working through issues of abuse years ago, I felt a rage to this question that shook the walls of my faith until they crumbled and began to give way.
As Sara shared the basis of her song and how she had asked that question for years, she said that she knew the truth was that God allowed horrible things to happen to those that loved Him. But He never withheld himself. He was the one good thing.
I had waited years to hear the answer to my question.
"For the Lord God is a sun and shield; The Lord gives grace and glory; No good thing does He withhold from those who walk uprightly."