The experience I shared in that post happened years ago, but it was a lesson for today.
Just yesterday morning, I shared these words on my Facebook page -
Today, I woke with a heart that was heavy and a plate that was full. My list seems long and motivation gone. Grief has a way of flooding us while sadness tries to overwhelm us. Questions tend to multiply while answers seem extinct.
Friend, I don't know what your life looks like, but can I encourage you with the words the Lord put on my heart, the verse He brought to mind and song that is running through my head? If you're in a hard place, I pray they encourage you too.
"Don't quit. Do the next right thing. Pray."
"I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus." Philippians 3:14
We, our family, our extended church family and our community are walking through grief. A young man gone too early. Hurting hearts, unanswered questions, pain that can't be described.
It's a pain that could cause a person to push a way. To distance themselves from God. To think and maybe even scream, "It's not fair!" Because you know, that's how it feels.
But like Jake's sister said, "My heart is broken, but God's ways and plans are higher and far better than ours even when we don't understand. He's had him from the beginning and He has him now." And his brother, "I know God is here today as He was yesterday."
Friend, their world has been rocked and perhaps your's has too. It happens, eventually it seems to all of us - situations change, relationships break, jobs end, illness comes, death happens. The things we thought weren't fair as a child dim in comparison.
Life is hard, but God is God. He doesn't change. Hebrews 13:8 tells us God is "the same yesterday, today and tomorrow." He was loving, graceful and forgiving last week, the same is true today and will be forever. He's had a plan since the beginning of time and though our plans change, His remains.
I've thought, prayed and cried much over the last couple of days. I don't understand and I don't have words, but I have hope. Honestly, there are moments it appears to be a flicker, but the light of Christ is shining. The Holy Spirit is at work reminding me when I don't have words, I need to go to the Word. I'm thankful for that advice. God's Word equips, brings comfort, reminds me I'm not alone and puts things into an eternal perspective.
When I don't understand, Proverbs 3:5 eventually comes to mind - "Trust in the Lord with all your heart lean not on your own understanding." Death is just one thing in life we don't understand...instead of letting that lead to frustration, I pray it encourages you to trust. Psalm 147:5 says, "Great is our Lord and abundant in strength; His understanding is infinite."
Friend, in these moments we don't understand, the trials that come and the days that are hard, we have an opportunity. We can cry out to God, He knows our hearts and wants to hear from His people. He sees our pain and can handle our questions. Like Peter, we too can ask God questions. I pray we're willing to obey His response - "You must follow me."
Dear Heavenly Father, thank you for your presence and your Spirit. We ask you to intercede and to provide. We thank you for peace that passes all understanding. We ask you for that for all who are hurting and grieving. Lord, help us trust and remember who you are. May we rest in your promises today. In Jesus' precious and powerful name, Amen.