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NIV is used unless otherwise noted.

The Unthinkable

“When I am afraid, I put my trust in you. In God, whose word I praise –
In God I trust and am not afraid.”
Psalm 56:3 -- 4a

The last time I saw *Jerry, he seemed pretty much all together. He was dressed very neatly, participated in our group discussion, and even complimented me on the study for that evening. 

Even though depressed about his impending divorce, he could be pleasant. He formed some friendships with some of the others in our group. He seemed better.

How could that same group in turn not have been a source of encouragement for Jerry as he tried to manage his own helplessness? “Helpless” was the term he himself used to describe what he felt.

I thought that being able to name and talk about that feeling would be a step in the right direction. Little did any of us know how wrong that assumption was. For, one afternoon Jerry took the life of his soon to be ex-wife, and then his own. His actions left two young children parentless.

It did not take long for the “what ifs” to hit. What if I had said the right thing? What if I had noticed the right thing? What if I had paid more attention? The only problem with “what ifs” is that they do not change the tragic event which happened. In his desperation, Jerry made the decision to do that unthinkable act while not considering the horrible consequences.

How can we move forward after the unthinkable has happened?

I can think of only one answer to that question. We can only look to God to give us the strength to make it, to keep our eyes on Him. We may never understand why the unthinkable happened, but we can become functional again with God’s help.

 May our one goal be, during the good times and the bad ones, to simply trust in Him.

God, help us to keep our eyes on You no matter what.  Thank you for the answered prayers and comfort which only You can give. 

*name changed

Susan P.

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