Tuesday, January 27, 2009

It's a matter of faith

There's a young woman I've come to know who was seriously injured in a head-on collision. She has spent the last 6 weeks recovering. The first 5 weeks were spent in the hospital. Now she is in rehab. She has begun the long leg of the journey. I have faith that she will walk again. I don't doubt it at all. I'm no doctor (the doctors have been cautious in their prognosis) but it is clear that she is a woman of determination, will-power, dedication and faith. She is on a difficult path, but she is surrounded and uplifted by a loving family and a strong network of friends. And she is already showing critical progress, so it's really no longer a leap to conclude that she will walk again. But I've known it for a while. She has been in my daily prayers.

Through this experience, I have learned something very important. Something I knew, but was ignoring. God hears our prayers and answers us in His own time. He may test our hearts. He may test our patience. But He never ignores us. If I'm praying for something and it seems my prayers are not being answered, does my faith flag? Do I turn away? I should not. I should "Keep the faith." Just as I maintain my faith that the young woman will be walking again.

It is like a diet lifestyle change. The results may not be immediately obvious but if you stick with it, eventually the benefits of the changes will become evident.

So why did I stop praying for my own children? Is it because they have rejected me? Reviled and rebuked me? No. My love isn't shaken by their need to move out from under my shadow. I think I'm guilty of letting my faith flag. I trust God is watching over them but that is not enough. I've renewed and reinvigorated my prayers for them as they travel on their own journeys. I pray they hear the whisper of God calling and that they turn to Him. I pray they stop seeking answers elsewhere.

I've been passionately offering prayers of intercession for the last few weeks. Since then, M has returned to Texas. She came to church Sunday with her husband and son. She asked if I could pick them up again next Sunday.

It is wonderful to be reminded that our faith is rewarded. Good things are coming.

I say to myself, "The LORD is my portion; therefore I will wait for him." The LORD is good to those whose hope is in him, to the one who seeks him; it is good to wait quietly for the salvation of the LORD. (Lamentations 3:24-26)

I waited patiently for the Lord to help me, and he turned to me and heard my cry. He lifted me out of the pit of despair, out of the mud and the mire. He set my feet on solid ground and steadied me as I walked along. He has given me a new song to sing, a hymn of praise to our God. Many will see what he has done and be amazed. They will put their trust in the Lord. (Psalm 40:1-3)

I've been reminding myself of this since my work situation has given me cause to pause and wonder. Trusting doesn't mean we never step into the mud and mire, or that we never need steadying. These days I'm seeking the comfort of the rod and staff of my shepherd as I tread on new ground. There are no paths before me. We are pioneering a new business model.

"Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God." (2 Corinthians 1:3-4)

As a leader in my organization, I am glad that I can bring some comfort to my team. We may not be free from troubles but we can at least be comforted.

I am depending on God to carry me through this. I trust Him in this just as I trust that the lame will walk again. And more than that, I trust Him to drive out the demons that plague my children.



Anonymous said...

Inspiring. As usual.

Heartfelt thanks.

you gotta wonder said...

Thank you Barbara.