Intentionally looking for God is a good thing and really opened my eyes to a truth I new, God is everywhere, but a reality I don't like to admit, I haven't always seen Him. Honestly it's been a challenge to narrow my thoughts down to a simple post most days and that is a good thing!! So onto today's post...
The other day I read a devotional that focused on Job 42:5, "I have heard of You by the hearing of the ear, but now my eye sees You." Henry Blackaby went on to share how during our trials God will reveal His character in ways we never knew. I have experienced this myself, but as I thought of my friend I saw this verse come to life.
You see Rachel and her family have had quite a year...I'll mention a few of the major things: stitches for their oldest son, her husband had an emergency appendectomy, a miscarriage, a major drought that affected their farm, she had her gallbladder removed and now their youngest son fractured his leg. She's still a longs ways from the suffering we read about in the book of Job, but that's a list of events I wouldn't want to experience in 10 months. How about you?
Now many might read this (or think about your own struggles) and wonder, "How can she see God in this?" Friend, there's a time I would have asked the same thing, but honestly as I've shared this journey with my friend I have seen God in it all. And I know Rachel has as well. I can't speak for her, but I'd like to share a few observations of my own:
1) Daily in my own life I'm reminded that I am not in control, but some of these major struggles have really solidified that fact. Seeing God in Rachel's life reminds me that Proverbs 19:21 is true - "Many are the plans in a man's heart, but it is the LORD's purpose that prevails."
2) Worry does us no good, but there is power in prayer. I'm not saying Rachel hasn't worried...I have to believe every Mom does that at least once, but she has prayed and asked for prayer. I have watched God answer prayers and work through them. He has provided, sustained and comforted. Matthew 6:34 says, "Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own." Rachel can vow for this, but she also knows the importance of 1 Thessalonians 5:17 - "Pray without ceasing!!"
3) One of my favorite passages is Romans 5:3-5, "Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us." Though I don't believe Rachel would have chosen the events that unfolded this year she has endured them. Because of that I have seen God at work and I know she has as well. Trials are never the way we'd chose to see God, but often it's a way He uses to reveal Himself to us. When we come to the end of ourselves, our patience, our ability...He shows up and He shapes us in the process. He's developing character in us to make us who He created us to be. When times are tough, we are able to see our God, a God who is stronger than any trouble that may come our way.
I share these things with a bit of hesitancy because I'd guess there were days when these thoughts and truths weren't the first thing on Rachel's mind. And I know the trials, injuries and illness won't always be part of my friend's life...someday I might have a year like her's. It is then in the dark that I must remember to hold on to what God has shown me in the light.
I'm praying this rollercoaster year will soon come to an end for my friend, but I'm thankful God has opened my eyes to see Him in it!! I hope you've caught a glimpse of Him here as well!! And if you want to read a firsthand account of Rachel's story check out her blog by clicking HERE!!
On a side note thanks to all those who left comments last week!! The winner of Wendy Blight's book is Rachel...I'll be contacting you!!