I've been working through my Experiencing God workbook for the past six weeks.
I've learned how important it is for us to remember these truths as we walk through every new day:
God is always at work around us.
He is constantly pursuing a relationship with us.
He invites us to become involved in His work.
He speaks by the Holy Spirit through the Bible, prayer, circumstances, and the church to reveal His plans, His purposes, and His ways.
His invitation often leads to a crisis of belief that requires faith and action.
We often have to make major adjustments in our lives to join Him where He's working.
We come to know God by experience as we obey Him and He accomplishes His work through us.
I looked ahead yesterday and noticed today's devotion was about how important it is to have God's perspective when we face difficult circumstances.
I almost read it yesterday, because I was so anxious to see what it said.
I'm kind-of glad I didn't then, but I'm glad I did today.
Because today I had also read about God's faithfulness in the book of Psalms.
The author of the devotion shared about a time when his daughter had cancer.
He shared about how her chemo was suppose to last eight months and what a horrible time it was in their lives.
He then shared about rallying prayer warriors all over the world, and how after three months, the doctor's couldn't believe it when her cancer was gone.
Of course he went on to talk about how God worked a miracle and how the prayer lives of thousands were strengthened because of what God did for them.
The final blow for me was this statement,
"I knew immediately that my job was to "declare the wonderful works of the Lord" to His people."
Here's where I struggled.
I had prayed for the same kind of story with Nick.
I had promised God I would declare forever His power and glory if He healed Nick, because I knew that thousands were praying for Nick too.........
waiting to see God's healing power displayed in a mighty way.
We even had a thumbs-up cloud as a promise of God's presence in our pain and suffering.
But, as you probably know by now, if you've walked through life long enough with our family,
that God chose to answer our prayer for Nick's healing in a completely eternal way.
Nick was definitely, wholly, perfectly healed.
But his healing led to our brokenness.
So, our reality isn't the reality we prayed for, fasted for, and longed for.
God has called us to a different kind of testimony.
A testimony that involves rejoicing with others even when our hearts are aching.
Watching Nick's friends and classmates get their caps and gowns yesterday as I entered the high school,
Seeing the huge grins on their faces as I took their pictures,
Realizing that graduation will be a milestone for them that is just the beginning of a big life here on earth,
this is where we've been called to live.
And sometimes reading a devotion in which the writer shares a different kind of cancer story hurts.
But, today as I was reading and hurting,
I was also reminded.
I was reminded that Nick is still smiling and that his story is still changing lives.
I was reminded that "death has no sting" when eternity with God follows.
I was reminded that after the cloud, God gave us a special rupee when we visited India!
And I was reminded that He led me to do some research when I got home from that trip that uncovered pictures of
Thumbs up Mountain in Manmad, India.
God then reminded me of Psalm 121,
I lift up my eyes to the mountains-
where does my help come from?
My help comes from the Lord,
the Maker of heaven and earth.
He reminded me that the heavens are the cloud and the earth is the mountain.
Our help comes from Him.
Just as He walked beside us through Nick's fight with cancer,
He walks with us in our grief.
Sometimes reading devotions can hurt.
But they can also remind.
I hope today even if you find life painful you will be reminded that God loves you and He is with you.......
every single step of today and tomorrow and the next day.
No matter what happens.
He is with you.
Even when life hurts.
And because of this truth, you can smile today.
You really can!!