I have loved this song since the first time I heard it. I love when they sing, "Even when the rain falls, even when the flood starts rising, even when the storm comes, I am washed by the water." If you've never heard it, seriously, listen to it.
Have you ever been to a revival service? I grew up in a very conservative church and we'd have a week of revival (or more) every year. Gospel singers would come and an evangelist would get everybody fired up. For a week, we'd be breathing faith every day. I went to an ultra-conservative college for a short time (it's hard for me to even describe it to you). There was much about that place that I didn't agree with (and it was one of the hardest years of my life), but there were these moments that were worth experiencing.
When the preacher would preach, the guys would stand and hold their Bibles straight up in the air and shout Amen. They'd get so fired up that you could no longer even hear the preacher. He'd take his microphone and walk through the entire sanctuary as he preached, up in the balcony, everywhere. Imagine a huge room where maybe 500 guys are standing in suits, shouting. The other pastors behind him on the stage are standing, holding Bibles up to the sky, shouting. It would give me goosebumps every time it happened.
There are these moments when faith feels like a wish, just a hope in your heart. And there are moments when having faith feels like wishful thinking. You're uncertain whether it's real. Is anyone listening, is anyone there? I know I've had those moments. Lots of those moments, truthfully. But then sometimes, you can have a moment where it feels as real as the air you're breathing.
The tricky part with faith is holding on to it regardless of how you feel. That's why they call it faith. And it's not ever easy. At least, not for me. Maybe for some. When I can't feel it, I think back to the moments where it's been real for me. Sometimes I just have to go back in my thoughts and recount those times where it's been too real to doubt.
One of my very good friends lost his dad this past Friday. I mentioned before that my brother-in-law's father is currently battling cancer. And it's really a battle. It wasn't all that long ago that Jeff's dad passed away. Gosh, that's a lot of hurt just in one paragraph, isn't it?
For my friend, Nathaniel, who just lost his father, I want to pray that even when it hurts, God feels as real as the air he's breathing. And I want him to know that being friends means we hurt when he hurts. It means he isn't alone.