Sunday, January 10, 2016

Trusting in the pain

     Tomorrow Gabrielle will turn 17.   This evening brings back a lot of memories.  The night before she was born, John and I stayed up late into the night talking about what our lives would be like after our daughter was born, our dream was about to happen.   After a long, hard and painful pregnancy of constant contractions and over 13 weeks of bed rest it was all about to come to an end as we welcomed our daughter into the world and we would just go back to our normal living with our baby, or at least that's what we thought. 

     I wont go into the actual events of the day of her birth but upon her arrival at 10:43pm she was blue, limp like a rag doll, her legs just floped over her head, she wasn't making a sound, the only life in her was a heartbeat, apgar score of 1.  My doctor tired to comfort me with her words, "She is gonna be alright."

      As a swarm of nurses were called down from what we would later learn as the NICU, her words brought no comfort, I knew in my heart something was tradgically wrong.  She was rushed out of the doctors arms into a slew of nurses.  They "worked" on her.  I could hear and see the frantic pace with which they tried to get her to breath.  And then, even today as clear and comforting as it was back then, the LORD GOD spoke.  He so clearly and tenderly spoke into the depths of my heart........

His word.........

His soothing word.......

His balm......

His word that brings a peace that surpasses all understanding.......

"Will you trust her with Me?"

   Without hesitation my heart leaped back,  "Yes LORD, how could I not.  I have already surrendered my entire life into Your hands."

  That was it.

  I had, we had no idea the road we were suddenly jerked onto nor where it would take us.  Even today, in the face of fear and the unknown, all the sacrifice, all the pain, all the joy, those words -- "Will you trust her with Me?" continues to ring true, they continue to bring His comfort, His peace into the present.  I couldn't walk this road yesterday, today or tommorrow without His grip on our lives.

     Most of the time my flesh wants to scream --
                This is not fair,  This doesn't make sense,  I don't want to walk this road anymore,  I don't want to move one.  more.  step.  forward.   

I think of His word to me on that very hard January night in the delivery room, "Will you trust her with Me?"  and again I respond just as I did that night,  "Yes LORD, I trust You." And in the place of trust comes rest, not rest from the storm but rest IN the storm. 

     As we do have to move forward because that's how time works, I will continue to hold on to His spoken and written words, to me, to my daughter, to my family.  I do not know what the future holds, He does.  I know what the doctors say and I know what my God, Creator of heaven and earth, Creator of Gabrielle, my Creator and what His word says.........

      "I am with you always, to the very end of the age."  Matthew 28:20

      "the eyes of the LORD your God are continually on it from the beginning of

      the year to its end."  Deuteronomy 11:12

     "Your eyes saw my substance, being yet unformed.  And in Your book 
      they all were written, The days fashioned for me, When as yet there 
      were none of them."  Psalm 139:16

In Him...... I will put my trust,

In Him...... I will rest.

Sunday, November 29, 2015

The Goodness of the LORD even in the waiting

The season in the valley has been long, and still is.

As the kids and I are studing Countries and Cultures this year we are currently in Norway.

There are cities in Norway who kiss the sun good bye in Sept and wait for it's return counting  6  l o n g months.  Right before the sun returns they make a day's journey climbing the mountains to welcome back the sun.  It truely is a sight to behold.  Imagine the joy of seeing the sun again after such a long wait.

God's word says in Psalm 27:13-14
I would have lost heart, unless I had believed
That I would see the goodness of the Lord
In the land of the living.

Wait on the Lord;
Be of good courage,
And He shall strengthen your heart;
Wait, I say, on the Lord!

To be honest there have been times in the last 6 years when I thought I was going to loss heart, I didn't think I could move forward another step.  Knowing His word doesn't lie, I held on to what looked only like a thin strand of hope and continued to wait.

As I continue to wait.......Jesus has so tenderly and graciously blessed a little girl in my life who has suffered so much with a fountain of joy.  For two weeks now she wakes from her slumber in smiles and bubbles of laughs,     all. day. long.

I feel like the people of Norway who have waited and even grew weary in their waiting (even calling this season the murky time and grow hungry to see the sun as if they haven't eaten for months) but have treked up the mountain to behold  the sun and are taking it all in.  I'm taking this gift, this grace.. all in, even though waiting continues.

So thankful for His grace over and in my daughter today.  He has strengthen my heart and I'm beholding these moments of His goodness in this land of the living, knowing that one day the mortal will be further clothed with immortality and sight will be given to faith.
 The great I AM is in our midst.

Saturday, July 18, 2015

When suffering is long

I can't tell you what it's like to care for your daughter 24/7 for sixteen plus years - day in and day out of suffering.
It's gut wrenching, painful.....
You try to run,
                          turn your head, 
                                 pretend it isn't.
You try to pray it all away........
    and yet God doesn't answer in the way you want.......
                  you so desperately desire.  

So you have two choices, two options.....

1.   To run, run away
       turn your face away from God,  just like we were when we were born into this world....
            faces away and clutched fists


2. You face the pain head on into the arms of a loving God who does redeem, saves and heals.............
But not always to our liking - which forces you to press in even more because it feels as if your very breath will be taken away in the pain and yet........
        He faithfully , Jesus faithfully gives you the next breath and the next breath and the next. In the taking of breathes you realize in this hard and broken world that even your very breath is a gift........
  a gift from Him, the One who creates.....and restores.  
You realize that on the day when all your days are done, are over, and you take your very last breath, once again He faithfully, Jesus faithfully will bring you from death to life.  Life in His very presence, into everlasting joy, where every tear is wiped away and everything is restored.  Peace and rest are finally realized.

It's a breaking of our will to walk this road.  A "not my will, but Yours, be done." (Luke 23:42)
It's His kindness, His mercy, His grace that makes all this possible.  
He is good.....even in pain and suffering.
He is good, He restores, He heals even though sometimes it doesn't look the way we want it to look and the road is long.
His mercy leads to repentance 
      Which leads to life 
                                  new life.         

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Peace, be still.......

I am so thankful for all of the promises God has in His word. promises that you can stand on. really really stand on. 

Ps. 46:1 God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. and because He is our refuge, strength, a very present help in trouble we can "be still and know that He is God." Ps. 46:10
"Who is mighty like You, O LORD, Your faithfulness also surrounds You. You rule the raging of the sea; When its waves rise, You still them." Psalm 89:8-9

In Ps. 23 His word tell us that He prepares a table before us in the presence of our enemies. Not in the absence of our enemies. in Ps 46:1 it's in trouble that He is our very present help. A help in the here and now. in the middle of the storm.

In Mark 4:35-41, Matt. 8:23-27 and Luke 8:22-25 Jesus taught us how to sleep in the middle of the storm. not to sleep in the absence of storms but right in the middle. He first told His disciples that they were going to the other side. Now remember this is God, the one who controls everything so if He says they were going to the other side they were going to the other side and no storm would stop them. as they launched out Jesus feel asleep. a huge storm came up to the point His disciple were so afraid they were going to perish. People, we will have storms in our lives where we feel like we are going to perish and we will even have the same questions that His disciples had -
"Teacher, do You not care that we are perishing?" Mark 4:38.
But don't just call Jesus teacher.
Know who He is!!! He is the "Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world." John 1:29 Jesus, because He is God, calmed the waves by saying, "Peace, be still!" The storm was gone. but He said to His disciples, "Why are you so fearful?" Mark 4:40. Jesus doesn't want us to be afraid in the storms of life. He wants us to know that He is in control of them all no matter how long they last or how they end. He wants our whole trust to be put in Him so that He can lead us around, through or completely quiet the storm.
It's in His word that will bring peace to our hearts in middle of the storms.

And when we have fulfilled the number of our days, (I Chron 17:13) He has promises for that as well!!! In your storm may you hear the Master of the storm speak to your heart today, "Peace, be still" and may you be able to rest assured knowing that He is fully in control and if you will submit yourself under His mighty hand (I Peter 5:6) He will direct your steps. (Prov. 3:5-6)

Friday, February 14, 2014

  • Being Valentine's Day I had to post this.  I read this years ago.  The author is unknown.  I have always loved this.  May it sink deep into your soul and spirit today and bring refreshment to you as you reflect on 
  • Who loves you the greatest
  •  His greatest act
  •  His greatest gift 
  • to you, dear one.......

  • John 3:16
  • God”...The greatest Lover
  • “So loved”...The greatest degree
  • “The world”...The greatest number
  • “That He gave”..The greatest act
  • “His only begotten Son”.The greatest gift
  • “That whoever”..The greatest invitation
  • “Believes”...The greatest simplicity
  • “In Him”...The greatest Person
  • “Should not perish”..The greatest deliverance
  • “But”....The greatest difference
  • “Have”....The greatest certainty
  • “Everlasting Life”..The greatest possession

Sunday, February 2, 2014

A Forever, Perfect, Unchangeable Covenant

Life is not about me..................
Life is not about you.................

It's not your story, it's not my story.  It's His Story.

It's about God the Father and His covenant with His Son Jesus Christ who is God Himself.

All covenants between God of all creation and man have been broken.  Not because of God - He is perfect and has always upheld His end of the agreement.  It's because of man - we are not perfect and we will always mess up and be covenant breakers. We have all sinned and have missed the mark.  Rom 3:23

The first covenant which came through the law was nothing more than to show us
    our sin......
    our brokenness......
    our need for redemption.......
    our need for a Savior..........
because through the law we were not made righteous.  We were/are only found guilty, condemned.

The covenant between God the Father and God the Son is a blood covenant.  Blood was shed to seal it.
Jesus lives forever and it's a forever, unchangeable covenant.

We need a revelation that we are only grafted into this covenant by faith ~ belief in what Jesus Christ did on the cross because of an agreement between Him and His Father to redeem humans.

So the first covenant through the law is our teacher, our tutor to show us that we are law-breakers.  We are judged guilty and the sentence is death.

OH, BUT, praise God that He did not leave us there.  He didn't leave us to be condemned, to be judged guilty, to be put to death.

What man could not do, God did through His Son.

Jesus, completely perfect, eternal and God Himself, shed His blood, entered the Holiest (Heb 10:19-23) once and for all ~  that's why the veil was torn from top to bottom.  Luke 23:45, Matt 27:51 ~ there is no more separation between God and man - the symbol of separation - the veil - was ripped in half making way for man to be with God.    By faith, we are justified, forgiven, set free from sin and the judgement of sin which is death.

We entered into the covenant by faith.    It's not a covenant between us and God anymore.  It's between God the Father and God the Son.

Are we getting it?  It has nothing to do with us - it never has, never will.

It's NOT about
    our works...........
    what we do.............
    what we don't do..............
It's NOT how nice we are, or how good we are, or how hard we try - none of that will ever measure up.  We have all sinned.  We all continue to turn our faces from the LORD God.  We can't do it, nor will we ever be able to live up to our end of the covenant.

That's why we are grafted in by faith in what Jesus has done into this covenant between God and His Son.  Jesus Lives and is making intercession for you, for me and is able to save to the uttermost those who come to God through Jesus.  Heb 7:25

It's through the covenant between God the Father and God the Son.

It's NOT a covenant with us and praise God for that because we would do what we do best - break the covenant - fall short once again.

Do you see?  The covenant is between God the Father and God the Son - PERIOD.
We don't add to it, we aren't even in the equation.  There is no algebra equation here, no a, b or c.
It's only God + Jesus = Salvation = Redemption

We are grafted in by God through our belief and faith in what Jesus did on the cross and that is all by faith.

I am so overcome and overwhelmed by the torn veil.

Friday, April 19, 2013

He is in the Storm

Hello friend.................

Again, we are in a storm.  It seems like they come ~ wave after wave...............

Our sweet Gabrielle is in the PICU.  It's hard to maintain life in the hospital.  Everything becomes unglued, I become unglued.   We are hard-pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair.  II Cor 4:8   No matter our circumstances ~ YHWH remains, He remains in control.  He is in control.  He holds this too, He holds my daughter, He holds my family, He holds me.

I grow weary...........
     exhausted, yet pursing. Judges 8:4

So thankful for His word.   His word anchors my soul to an unshakable ROCK in the shakeable storm. 
So thankful that the Word became flesh and dwelt among us.  John 1:14

He is here my friend.  He is here, in our circumstances.  He is in your circumstances too.  Do you see Him?  Are you able to recognize Him?  Even if you can't see Him, He's here.  Your very breath is evident of Him in your life.
         "without Me you can do nothing." Jesus   John 15:5

As I wrestled this morning through thick tears with fears unimaginable for any mom to bear, the LORD Himself reach down and lifted me up out of the miry clay and placed my feet on His stable ground, His rock and established my steps.  Psalm 40:2

I heard Him
    a delicate whispering voice (1 Kings 19:12)
He spoke so tenderly, so precious
      have made
      in its time."
      Ecc. 3:11

What really caught my attention in this verse is the "have made".  He has already done it.  Everything beautiful.  Wow.  Here, in my daughter's struggle, in her pain, in my fear ~ beauty.  Something that He has done.  Even though we don't see the completion yet.  We struggle with the see part don't we.  We want to have all our ducks in a row, everything in order, everything in it's place.  I have been so challenged to know His peace in all circumstances.  To take ahold of His peace in the here and now, in the mess.  It's only a mess to us, not to Him.  He sees, He knows.

Everything.  His word says everything ~ nothing is too far from His redemption, it's all covered.  "Is My hand shortened at all that it cannot redeem?  Or have I no power to deliver?"  Isaiah 50:2  Do you hear?  Nothing in your life, nothing in my life is beyond His reach.  He is the Creator and He sees all and knows all and He is working it all into His plan.  Romans 8:28. 

      Redemption is His Story and He makes it our story.

I don't understand how He takes all the evil in the world and uses it for His glory and His purposes, but He does.  He is YHWH, God and He is good.

   what a precious promise for you, for me, for all who will put their trust in Him.

In its time............
    He has a purpose, season for everything.  Have you been able to thank Him for His seasons in your life.  As He whispered these verses to me I was able to.    Because of His mercy, once again I was able to exchange fear for His peace.  He took my tears, He is holding them as He holds me.  My daughter belongs to Him ~ from the beginning to the end. 

Great comfort is found in His word........
    I know that nothing is better for them than to rejoice.  Ecc 3:12   I am thankful to YHWH, He changed my tears today into rejoicing in Him.  In His perfect plan because He has already made it all beautiful in its time.  I can rejoice as I wait patiently for the completion of His work, His beautiful work. 

     "I know that whatever God does,
      It shall be forever.
      Nothing can be added to it.
      And nothing taken from it.
     God does it, that men should fear before Him."   Ecc 3:14

Once again in the storm, my Creator, took me to the eye of the storm, covered me and restored rest to my soul.  He longs to do the same for you right in your storm.  "Do not be afraid. Stand still, and see the salvation of the LORD, which He will accomplish for you today."  Exodus 14:13  "The LORD will fight for you, and you shall hold your peace!!"  Exodus 14:14

Praying for you friend...............