The Goodness of God in Pain

By Nancy Flory Published on January 6, 2021

To all of us kids, he was Uncle Buddy. Norman Davis, Jr., who once wrote for The Stream, has gone to be with Jesus after complications from COVID-19. Once again, our family has lost someone precious. The pain is nearly unbearable.

I say nearly unbearable because Uncle Buddy knew Jesus. As much as we’re hurting, we know he is rejoicing in heaven, along with our loved ones who’ve gone on before. He is in the presence of Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior. We do not grieve as those who do not know the Lord. 1 Thessalonians 4:13-14 tells us this:

Brothers and sisters, we do not want you to be uninformed about those who sleep in death, so that you do not grieve like the rest of mankind, who have no hope. For we believe that Jesus died and rose again, and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him.

But in the middle of hurting, God is still good. 

The Great Redeemer

Several years ago, I wrote about my husband, who has been sober for 2 1/2 years now. I wrote about the struggles of addiction and how he’d left me and my son because of it. But that wasn’t the end of the story. God is the Great Redeemer. He revealed Himself to my husband, who then came back to our family as a follower of Jesus Christ, asking forgiveness. Over the years he’s shown himself to be the kind of man I wanted in my husband. God has truly redeemed our family. 

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Tonight I watched my husband as he carefully talked with our son about Uncle Buddy. He explained to him that Uncle Buddy went to be with Jesus, that Jesus had called him home. It was not lost on me that this man, whom I once thought was lost forever, did something I never thought he was capable of doing. He was sharing the beginning steps of salvation with our son. The one I thought could never be redeemed was redeemed and shared that redemption with our little boy. God is so good. He is nurturing within my son a desire for knowledge of Him through an event that has caused so much pain. 

Yes, we will continue to grieve for Uncle Buddy. But we do not grieve like those without hope. For our hope is in salvation through Jesus, no matter the circumstances, no matter the loss.

Through unimaginable pain, God brings unimaginable hope. 


Nancy Flory is an associate editor at The Stream. You can follow her @NancyFlory3, and follow The Stream @Streamdotorg.

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