JUST AS HE SAID

With Easter just finishing up, I have been reflecting back on the familiar passages that many of you also read during this past week.

There is so much power in the Resurrection- victory over death, hope in eternal life. But over the past few days, I have been reflecting on 6 words found in the Gospel of Matthew.

Matthew 28:6 (NLT) says ” He isn’t here! He is risen from the dead, just as he said would happen.” Read those words again. Let them sink in. These words have been floating through my mind throughout the week- as I played with my kids, as I cleaned the house, as I fed my 9 week old late in the evening.

These words affirm that a promise has been fulfilled.

But right before? 3 days of darkness, sadness, and despair for those that loved Jesus.

Feelings of loneliness and being let down.

Silence from God. Everything felt final- I mean, Jesus was dead. There was nothing more final.

Valleys. Silence. Despair. We have all been there in some way, shape, or form~ where the trial we are facing feels final, like there is no way out, and the silence of God is so loud it is deafening.

But then Sunday comes~ “a new day dawning” as Matthew writes in 28:1. An empty tomb. God at work. A promise fulfilled.

Jesus~ the keeper of His word. I have come to realize how true this is. He has been my Peace when all else was chaos , my Comforter when there were tears of sorrow, and my Provider when needs needed to be met.

So, press into Him. He never leaves us nor forsakes us. There is a new day dawning.

Just as He said.

“I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid.” (John 14:27 NLT)

Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.  Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls.  For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.” (Matthew 11:28-30)

Then, turning to his disciples, Jesus said, “That is why I tell you not to worry about everyday life—whether you have enough food to eat or enough clothes to wear. 23 For life is more than food, and your body more than clothing. 24 Look at the ravens. They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, for God feeds them. And you are far more valuable to him than any birds! 25 Can all your worries add a single moment to your life? 26 And if worry can’t accomplish a little thing like that, what’s the use of worrying over bigger things?27 “Look at the lilies and how they grow. They don’t work or make their clothing, yet Solomon in all his glory was not dressed as beautifully as they are. 28 And if God cares so wonderfully for flowers that are here today and thrown into the fire tomorrow, he will certainly care for you. Why do you have so little faith? (Luke 12:22-28)

 

Waiting Turned To Joy

Hope was only a few months old when I felt it. It is something hard to explain unless you have experienced it too. God prompting. Sometimes it comes in subtle manners. Sometimes it feels like a bulldozer. That day was a bulldozer moment. God was trying to get my attention. I was in the middle of a church service listening to a song about grace when I felt this heavy burden to start praying for a sibling for Hope. For those who know our story, you know how much of  a miracle Hope is! To pray for another baby so soon seemed crazy.

Maybe I heard wrong?

I was certainly doubting it all, but I also knew what the promptings of the Lord felt like. So I started praying. I wrote everything down in my journal just in case, by some fluke chance, another baby somehow was added to our family.

A couple of months later, for the first time ever, I became pregnant. I was in awe; I couldn’t believe that God was pouring down another amazing blessing on me.

Until.

About a month later, I miscarried. When the ultrasound tech told me “Some people are just not meant to be pregnant”, I doubted everything I believe God had asked me to pray for. Over those next several months, I battled with anger and sadness. Sadness and anger. Why would God take something away that He had asked me to pray for? I will never know that answer. But what I do know is this: He is good, He is faithful, and He never stops working.

Over the next 2 & 1/2 years, I continued to pray for this baby. But it came to the point whenever Adam and I had a discussion about it, the door was closing. So last April, we decided it was time to start selling all of our baby things.

One month later, I was pregnant. And this was confirmation to me that God really does have a sense of humor. 🙂

As I faced new fears that this would end in another horrible miscarriage, I meditated on some verses in Isaiah in the early weeks of the pregnancy:

Don’t be afraid, for I am with you.
    Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you.
    I will hold you up with my victorious right hand. (43:10)

“From eternity to eternity I am God.
    No one can snatch anyone out of my hand.
    No one can undo what I have done.” (43:13)

Remember the things I have done in the past.
    For I alone am God!
    I am God, and there is none like me. (46:9)

Ad the verse I claim for Henry’s life:

I am doing this so all who see this miracle
    will understand what it means—
that it is the Lord who has done this,
    the Holy One of Israel who created it. (41:20)

On January 24th, Henry was born. And once again, I am humbled at God’s kindness in my life. He is so full of grace.

I don’t sit here and write this with a presumptuous attitude that life is easy and God gives us anything we ask for. Because I certainly know this isn’t true. I sit here and write this with a heart that can only proclaim His mercy and grace despite my shortcomings, despite my moments of unbelief.

I write this to encourage anyone of you who is in a waiting period to continue to press into the Lord even if you really want to run away.

I write this to encourage anyone of you that God is not a waster of time. When there seems to be no movement, God is moving still.

And..most importantly…God’s mercies are new every morning.

GREAT IS HIS FAITHFULNESS.

He makes all things new. And with that, He has the power to turn your waiting into joy.

Thank you for loving my family and following along with us. We are so grateful for each of you.