“Why is light given to those in misery, and life to the bitter of soul, to those who long for death that does not come, who search for it more than for hidden treasure?” (Job 3:20-21) and we cry: “Lord, I believe; help my unbelief!” (Mk 9:24)
There are many things we do not fathom. One of them is the suffering and even dying of promising and flourishing youth, while others are just so tired, finished and despondent longing to pass away, but just wake to see another day of misery and bitterness. I think it is one of the most trying things to see you own child suffer and wither away, but you can do nothing else than commit it to the mercy and loving care of our heavenly Father and his Son, our Lord and saviour Jesus Christ.
Just like that father, who came to Jesus after trying so much and many different things to help and save his suffering child. He was quite desperate and at his own wits end. He didn’t know, what or who could help. Yet he was longing so deeply for cure, healing and salvation. He knew, that his own faith would not be the power to save – not his positive thinking, not his healthy attitude. Rather, he calls from the bottom of the pit: Help my unbelief! And that’s what the Lord has come to do. Seek and save the lost. He grants forgiveness, life and salvation – even in and through illness and death – and even on account of vicarious petitions and pleas. The ill child does not even feature actively in the account. It is healed because the helping Lord and saviour answers the anxious pleading and begging of the father so favourably and willingly. Praise be to him now and always +
“Now with the humble voice of prayer Thy mercy we implore; Then with a grateful voice of praise Thy goodness we’ll adore.” (Philip Doddridge, 1737 TLH 434:5)