Over the weekend, some disappointments came my way.
I was unable to go to my Aubrey’s seventeenth birthday party because I was sick with that cursed stomach thing. And, I found out that I am again not pregnant. These are two things that would generally hit my depression where it hurts and send me on a downward spiral.
And yet. I’m good.
I’m disappointed, yes. There have been moments of sadness. But right now, on Monday, the week seems to burst with promise. The day is stretched out before me, full of possibilities. Sun streams through the den window and a baby laughs at Veggie Tales while the house around me sleeps. God is with me.
My husband prayed that God would reveal Himself and show His purpose to me in the midst of these disappointments. And, He did. (Because the prayers of a righteous man avail much.)
1. “Release control, Daughter.” I don’t characterize myself as controlling person…but I ought to. It’s not always obvious, but I want to be the Master of my own fate. I want to be the one who decides when babies come, how money is going to be spent, who’s going to be doing what. I strive for security in trying to control my circumstances. But you know, no one can decide when a new baby is going to come but God. He is Creator God. I can’t control who gets sick and who doesn’t and when. I can’t control- get ready for it- anything but how I respond to things!
2. “Let your community love you.” I am blessed in community. I have more friends than I can count. In a recent sermon, our Pastor asked, “Who would you call at 2:00am?” and my list was long. I have family and friends that I can rely on. Family and friends that love me well and who support me wherever I am. Family and friends that live the love of Jesus. This community came together and made Aubrey’s birthday party magical. I’m sorry to have missed it, but blessed by seeing His love in it. It’s so hard for me to ask for and to receive help. This is due to insecurity and pride, which walk hand in hand in my life. My people threw my daughter a beautiful party and they were happy to do it. We are blessed and loved well.
3. “Wait on me.” I don’t know why he’s making me wait for this sixth baby, but I’ll bet He does. I don’t know why my household got the stomach sickness, but He does. I don’t know why a lot of things happen…but He does. He can see the end of the story. And He has promised to work all things together for my good.
4. “Practice what you’ve been learning.” This past week, I tested out the new table. (See Big Life Stuff so that you’ll know what in the world I mean by that.) I practiced the rejection of negativity. I practiced thankfulness. I practiced relying on the things I know for sure- He is real. He is good. He loves me. He works all things together for my good. His ways are not my ways. And you know what? It worked. I was not spared the troubles, but I was spared the feelings of desperation and hopeless sorrow.
Learning to live and love Jesus does not mean disappointing or even really awful things won’t come our way. It just means we will be better equipped to handle life when they do.
John 16:33 “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world!”
We are guaranteed troubles, we are guaranteed hard times. We are also guaranteed the presence, comfort and security of God.
I think of my friend Jen who has lost one son and is pressing through troubles with her second son’s health. Troubles with her child’s health that go way beyond stomach sickness and ear infections. She weathers these storms with faith and endurance. She is the very epitome of the living the love of Jesus. She has refused to give up on “God is good”. She believes it with her whole heart. She does not hide from the real feelings of fear, sorrow, grief, even occasional anger. But she bears these feelings at the cross. Her faith is so evident that people have been transformed by witnessing it. She and her family stand on a firm foundation of faith. They are world changers. Her sons, Silas and Carter are world changers.
I want to be a world changer. Even if it’s just in my small world.
If you want to learn more about Jen and her amazing son, you can go to My Story of Silas.