Dec 8, 2021 | Podcast, The Living Room

074: God’s Goodness in the Darkness with Sarah Clarkson

“God will meet us in the darkness and give us eyes to see the treasures there!”

In this episode, Sarah Clarkson shares her personal story of wresting with God in the midst of mental illness from her book, This Beautiful Truth: How God’s Goodness Breaks into Our Darkness. Sarah found herself in the midst of deep personal pain and surrounded by a broken world leading her to ask questions like:

“Where is God?”

“Can He be trusted?”

“Is He still tender towards me?”

God began to open her eyes to His goodness and beauty all around her. In the midst of the darkness.

If you struggle with a mental illness or feel overwhelmed by the darkness and unrest in our world today, this will encourage your heart. When your trust in God has been shaken, He is there.

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Important Takeaways from Show

  • Suffering, grief and loss can drain our world of beauty and meaning
  • Understanding the evil in the world and the goodness of the Lord creates a constant tension
  • God wants us to taste and see His goodness every day (Psalm 34:8) 
  • Stories and art can re-enchant our own world, helping us to recognize the beauty of the person and presence of Jesus all around us again (C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien)
  • Rather than allow ourselves to disengage, we must choose life and hold fast to God (Deuteronomy 30:19-20)
  • Jesus demonstrates God’s power to redeem all things, to take what is broken and fully restore it
  • Theodicy is the study of God and justice
  • God created a world that was meant to reflect His beauty and goodness
  • We were given the gift of freedom; Having free will is what gives us the ability to love
  • We can use our freedom to destroy the world or order it
  • Our freedom is based on God’s choice to give us freedom; therefore His Sovereignty will always prevail
  • We have the opportunity to respond to God’s beauty, to be a part of creating it and offer it to others
  • Rather than deny the reality of evil, we can choose to embrace the beauty and light of God all around us
  • Being redeemed in the midst of our pain means clinging to the hope that God’s Kingdom is coming
  • God is unthreatened by our frailty; His goodness and grace engage with us wherever we are (Psalm 103:14)

5 Ways to Find Joy in the Midst of Darkness

  1. Seek companionship and community – Pain can be the great isolator so we must choose to draw near to Christ-minded people
  2. Recognize the power of words – Engage with the life-giving redemptive words of Scripture
  3. Look for tiny acts of God’s beauty – Counter the darkness by waking up to the beauty all around you
  4. Step away from the online world – Let your first encounter of the day be with Scripture and God’s creation
  5. Focus on the present – Recognize God and His wonder in your everyday life

"God is not a God who stands apart from our suffering - He is the God who enters into it." Sarah Clarkson - The Living Room Podcast - TLR 074

I will give you the treasures of darkness
And hidden riches of secret places,
That you may know that I, the Lord,
Who call you by your name,
Am the God of Israel.

~ Isaiah 45:3 NKJV

Links from Show

This Beautiful Truth: How God’s Goodness Breaks into Our Darkness

Book Girl: A Journey through the Treasures and Transforming Power of a Reading Life

[Disclosure: I make a small commission from affiliate links used in this post.]


Connect with Sarah Clarkson

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