(a quiet repost while I enjoy my family at the beach)
This weekend was exhausting to say the least. I worked Saturday in Trauma ICU for 13 hours in a level one trauma hospital... It seems that Charlotte has a very high crime rate, higher than NY. It did seem that way Saturday. I have never seen so many young people laying in hospital beds for things that were self-inflicted. But my patient was an elderly lady who had been struck by a car on her morning walk.. So very sad. This lady, according to family and friends, was an amazing person. They said she was self-less, always doing for others. She loved her family, and she loved God.. and now she is suffering from a horrific accident that may take her life.
On Wednesday mornings I attend "Women of the Word" at my church. Our leader is an amazing lady with a love for God that makes us all want what she has. She got a phone call on Tuesday afternoon, the day before we meet to have bible study. I didn't know this at the time but her son was a missionary in Africa. The phone call was from the American Embassy. She was told that her son was dead at the age of 26 years old. They gave no explanation why. This is where some of my Gaps in my Faith are. This is where I struggle!
There are kids that die everyday in this world from horrible accidents. There are loved ones that are diagnosed with a terminal illness and die. There are tragedies happening all around us. It makes us want to cry out WHY? Why does the Lord allow certain horrible things to take place? With one breath, with one word He, who created the earth in 7 days, could stop any tragedy, He could heal any sickness. He could do away with death. So WHY? Why doesn't he?
I was looking over my notes from church on Sunday. We have been studying 1 Thessalonians for a couple of weeks which is dealing with Faith, Trials and Tribulations, and all the things that test US and our FAITH!!! Pastor pointed out that all of us have a Gap in our faith! Think about that for a moment. Where do you struggle in your faith? Oh how I wish I could hear your thoughts on this one. Please, Please, PLEASE leave me a comment on what some of your struggles are when it comes to Faith!
When dealing with affliction and distress we are supposed to be comforted by our FAITH.. Did you know that? We are to walk by FAITH not by SIGHT. If we don't walk by FAITH then everything we do is in vain........ It is like turning around and looking at God and saying; "I DON'T BELIEVE.."
One reason we have GAPS in our FAITH is because we turn things over to God and in the next minute we take it back trying to handle things ourselves.. We think we can fix it!!! Anybody? Listen to me girls: WE HAVE TO LET GOD BE GOD!!! When we can't let God be God then reality becomes clear - WE DON'T TRUST GOD!!!
We live in a fallen world and some people are going to experience tragedy. There will be parents who will lose a child. There will be people who lose a spouse to an accident, illness, etc. We ourselves might have some major health problems to deal with.
People look at people who are Christians or who are in ministry and shake their heads with disbelief and scream: "If your God was so GOOD, then WHY? Why would He allow these horrible things to happen?????"
This is where people like me step in and FEEL like we have to explain GOD!!!!!
God did not die on the cross for me or for you to try and explain him.... He didn't say "MAKE ME LOOK GOOD..." Have you ever felt like you had to make God look good to someone? I know I have....
Isaiah 55:8: For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
neither are your ways my ways.......
We would be foolish to think we understand God!!!His knowledge and wisdom are far greater than mans.. This is where man tries to fit God into a box and mold him into what they think He is....Instead we should be striving to fit into his plans. This is what separates the real Christian from the fake Christian..
When people come to us hurting and looking for an answer, we should say
"NO I don't UNDERSTAND God... I can't explain Him.. But I know this: GOD IS GOOD.....And HE HAS A PLAN!" He didn't say "make me look good, " He said PROCLAIM ME!!! Proclaim me during your trials.. Trials are part of walking with Jesus.. Pain is part of the package. Pain will weed out the authentic Christians from the fake ones. This is when our gaps will start to close and it is a painful process!!! Suffering produces Patience!! When we go through trials it qualifies us to help someone else! When we are broken spiritually that is when God will get the Glory!! He will teach us who He is during our trials. And once we start to understand the characteristics of God, everyone and everything can come crashing down around us and we will remain standing... He will burn off the fake!!! He will burn away all the impurities, all the stuff that gets in the way of you and Him...
Trial's are not something happening to us, it is God working in us....And guess what? You are never closer to God than when you are in the trial!!!
The Lord is a refuge for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble.
Those who know your name will trust in you, for you Lord, have never forsaken those who seek you..................
To forsake someone means to abandon that person. God's promise doesn't mean that if we trust in him we will not go through suffering or loss. It means that God himself will never LEAVE you.. No matter what you are facing.... NEVER LEAVE YOU NOR FORSAKE YOU!!!!!!!!!
Saturday night Sean, my 15 year old, missed getting home before curfew. She called around 12:30 am that night. We were both screaming in the phone trying to figure out where she was. When we couldn't get a clear answer from her my husband insisted she hang up and text him the address where she was so he could come and get her. (big mistake; don't ever let them get off the phone with you) Once they hung up we never received a text and was unable to reach her again by phone etc. for a short time. She was with some friends that are not her normal group which I think made things even worse. The friend she was with would not answer her phone either. We had no contact information for the girls' parents. All we could do was continue calling Sean and pray. I felt like I could not breath and then it was like pure panic enveloped me. My body started shaking and I felt this coldness all around me. It was paralyzing fear from thinking about the "what ifs" and the unknown of where and what my child was doing. My husband was pacing the driveway hoping that she would come home. Being a critical care nurse I was starting to have these thoughts that something had gone terribly wrong.
Then the phone rang and it was the dad of the girl Sean was with. He said the girls were now safe and at his house. This was the best news we could hear. We were so confused and didn't understand what was going on, but our child was safe. ( Praise you Lord!!!) Did I stop and trust? No, I went right in to panic and unbelief. My husband went to get her at 2 am. As I waited anxiously for him to bring her home, I just sat in my room in silence. Then it hit me that He, God himself, was right there with me the whole time. He is where his children are. He is in the same place He has always been. 'ON THE THRONE!!!!'
When it is the most miserable time in our lives. When we are sitting in a church for a funeral service for a loved one and we see the family walking in, with tears streaming down their faces. It is He, God himself who leads the way. It is He, God, who is walking in front of them leading the way. It is He, God, standing right there with us breaking us free from bondage that has held on to us for so long. We have to Trust Him and know Him enough to know that He is there...never leaving us and never forsaking us, but there waiting on us to lean on Him and ask Him to guide our next steps, our next reaction. He wants to fill the Gap, and only He can if we allow him too.
Trying to learn to talk to God when I am in the fire. I want God to fill the gaps of my faith, one hole at a time, until my path to Him is a smoother one to walk on.
all of grace,