At the time of this writing, I’m sitting on a hospital bed, scratching this out with pen and paper. (I’m home now as I’m publishing this. Let’s thank the Lord for a moment, seriously.)
I think I’ve reached what feels like a safe conclusion: the Lord doesn’t enter the hospital room with you.
I know it’s not true. I know it’s blasphemous. “The Lord your God will be with you wherever you go. He will never leave you nor forsake you.”
Tell that to me when I’m wondering if I’m going to die.
I’m cold, I’m sleep-deprived, and I’m scared to death. I’ve got a needle sticking out of my arm spurting blood into a tube, and I’m wondering where I’m going to spend the night.
It’s been a long… year.
It feels like God stayed outside when I walked through the hospital doors. Like He would never enter the room with me because of who I am and what’s happened to me.
I know it’s wrong. I know He’s with me everywhere.
But something feels very lonely and forsaken about a hospital room.
I don’t feel safe in paper scrubs. I don’t feel safe huddled under a thin, scratchy white blanket, with a nurse probing me with questions and doctors examining my wounds, trying to enter my mind and assess if I’m going to be safe or not.
I’ve never felt quite as alone before, quite so far from God as right now. Usually, it’s when I’m alone in my room that God feels far away. When I’m out and about in public around other people, usually not so much. But right now… God seems so distant.
Literally, like He stayed outside the hospital room and is waiting for me to come out.
But it’s simply not true. He’s right here beside me, and that’s what I have to tell myself, no matter what happens to me or where I go. He’s always here with me.
Some of you know what I’m talking about. Some of you reading this have medical conditions that leave you asking “Why?”, that have you believing God’s on the other side of that door.
He’s not. He’s right here. He is with you. AND HE IS NOT LEAVING YOU.
It’s His love for us even when we don’t deserve it. It’s His grace when we’re so unworthy. It’s who He is and who that makes us.
He’s not leaving. And He doesn’t have a fear of hospital rooms.
Through the pain, the darkness, the loneliness, the fear, He promises – that’s a promise from *God* – that He will not leave you or forsake you. Even in the pit of hell. Even through the darkest night. Even in the hospital room.