My friend is sick, and my heart is troubled that he is in Africa, serving God, and has become so desperately ill. My friends' home was broken into - violation of their private space - and some possessions taken, and my heart is troubled that they have been upset in this way. My young friends are battling for their marriage, and my heart is troubled that this is taking place, even though I know that coming through this will make them stronger.
It is good that my heart is so troubled for them. I do not feel an absence of God in all these circumstances, but the quiet reassurance that He is here, knows and is involved in each of these circumstances. It is good that my own heart is stirred to be constantly remembering them and reminding the Lord that I also care what happens.
It is this higher perspective that gives us hope and life. It is not a place of desperately grappling with and for something in the midst of the trees, unable to see anything but the problems. No, my heart is at peace in His love and yet stirred for the plight of others. Is this not the mission of prayer. I know that God 'looks on the heart of a man' and knows that it is feeling the distress of another. I believe this makes a way for His love and compassion to flow into their circumstances, and for help and change to come swiftly to them.
So, my heart remains troubled for my friends, but it also remains at peace and knows that help is on its way!