There are some days my heart is so heavy with the pain of this world, it is hard to see the hope in it all. In Africa it is seeing and hearing about one tragedy after another that many children have to suffer through. Here in America most recently in our family it is watching our daughter and little grand daughter go through such hardship through a recent divorce full of disappointments and broken promises. Our precious girls have to remain in Texas due to custody issues, and we as a family in Seattle, are forced to either plunge into despair for them, or to trust God with their lives and situation.
I just recently came back from a trip to see them and my heart broke when I had to say goodbye to my little grand daughter, who is only two. She began to plea with me to not go, reaching her arms out and crying profusely saying, “No go mimi, No go”, over and over. This whole scene about killed me emotionally. In her shuffling from home to home in her visitations of mom and dad, she does the same thing when carted from one parent to the next. She does not understand all of this pain.
In my old Testament reading this week, I am reminded of some people who experienced way more unimaginable hurt and trauma than I could ever imagine, yet God was always proving His faithfulness even amongst their painful circumstances.
I am reading the story of Moses’s life in Exodus. When Pharaoh ordered his soldiers to kill all the male Hebrew babies, Moses’s mom hid him for three months, then put him in a basket, praying incredibly for his safety. As she lovingly laid him amongst the reeds at the rivers edge, she had to trust God with her little precious bundle. As a mother, I cannot even fathom the pain and fear she was feeling as she said goodbye to her little baby boy, not knowing what would become of him once released from her arms. Would the soldier’s find him and kill him? Would the basket over turn in the river and her beloved baby drown?
To his mother’s great relief, God did answer her prayers, by softening the heart of Pharaoh’s daughter to take him in and raise him as her own child. God even ordained the circumstances so Moses’s mother could nurse him till he was weaned. (In those days, some scholars say a child was weaned around the age of 5).
Because of Moses’s background, God had a huge mission for him, which we all know was to free millions of his own race from slavery.
I am reminded once a again that God is always in the business of redemption, restoration and rescuing if we will pray for His highest will to be done and to trust Him in all things.
I had my daughter take one last picture of me and my precious little doll baby, before our good byes took place. As I was breathing prayers for this little one in my arms, I would later look at the picture to see God do a beautiful thing for me as a reminder of a visual expression of His faithfulness. A ray of sunshine can be seen shining directly on this precious little one in my arms, as if God were to say “I have got her, she is mine and I am protecting and watching over her. When man fails her, I will not, When evil lurks around her, I am there. Trust me with her and with your daughters life”.
Every day, I am choosing to trust God in all this and with every other circumstance that is completely out of my control.
As it says in Ecclesiastes Chapter 3 There is a time for all things. Sometimes we are to do nothing buy pray and to trust God. Sometimes we are to fight, as I do regularly in Africa for justice issues when kids are starving or being trafficked or abused.
The key is, knowing what God is saying for this season and to trust that GOD IS GOOD, no matter what the circumstances are around us. Our job is to stay steady and faithful in what He is asking us to do today. Taking one day at a time. He truly is trustworthy!!
When life takes a turn for the worst, and circumstances seem to go very wrong, do we blame God for our hardship? Do we feel that since we love God, that He should spare us from such pain and difficulties?
In reading about Joseph’s life in Genesis 37 through Chapter 50, He had God’s incredible favor in his life, yet he certainly was not spared hardships.
At the age of 17, he was sold by his brothers into Slavery to the Egyptians, He would not see his family again for 17 years. He was thrown into prison for two years after being wrongly accused of sleeping with his boss’s wife. Through it all he kept his walk with God strong and his integrity in tack.
Through all the hardships he endured, Everyone around him had the highest respect for him and he was quickly elevated to the highest form of leadership wherever he was placed.
After interpreting a dream for Pharaoh when no one else could, Pharaoh saw God’s hand on his life, and put him in the highest position a person could have in all of Egypt, just under himself. Joseph was given authority to rule over the entire country and was given instant wealth,
Through Joseph’s interpretation of Pharaoh’s dream, that there would be seven years of plenty and seven years of famine, Joseph was put in charge of storing up the grain during the years of plenty. Through Joseph’s actions the entire human race was spared from starvation during the famine. The whole world came to buy grain from Egypt during the famine, not to mention his entire lineage was saved as well.
The story of Marielle comes to mind. She is a precious girl in one of our orphanages. She was sold as a child into slavery. Being used as a domestic slave, she escaped at age 13 after she was being forced to marry a muslim man with many wives. She was brought to us from the streets by a social welfare worker. In asking Marielle how she survived such incredible hardships, she said it was because of Jesus. She accepted Jesus in her life as a young girl, and has kept close to Him her whole childhood. She said if it weren't for her relationship with Jesus, she could not have survived. Life was too traumatic. She never blamed God for her hard life. You would never know she has been through such abuse. She is so resilient and loves to learn in school.
It is stories like these that renew my hope in the power we carry within us through Christ. No matter what the circumstances. Marielle, was rescued and now has a wonderful future ahead of her. She gives all the credit to God. My problems compared to what she has gone through is so minor in comparison.. I consider myself blessed each day I get to live free, even with the trails that come my way.
Through our own difficulties and trauma's of life, God wants us to stand strong in Him and trust Him with our whole life and with the lives of those in front of us. We do not always understand why God allows certain hardships to occur, but we do know that God is good, and His heart is always for redemption, rescuing and restoration. He always has a bigger plan than we can imagine. If we will keep our eyes on Him and not on our circumstances, we will be able to share in the beauty of that plan as He unfolds his glory upon our lives even amidst the pain.
Genesis 24:7 ....He will send His angel before you.....
In the story where Abraham was sending his servant to find a wife for his son Issac, we are reminded that God goes before us in all things. Abraham did not want his son to marry a foreigner who did not follow in the ways of God. He wanted his son to marry a woman among his relatives who followed in God’s ways, from the land he had moved from.
When tasking his oldest and most trusted servant with this assignment, the servant became apprehensive with such responsibility. He said to Abraham. “Perhaps the woman will not be willing to follow me to this land”. Must I take your son back to the land from which you came?” Abraham said “Absolutely not, God has promised this land to all my descendants. You must never take him back there. God will send His angel before you, and you shall take a wife from there.
With the servant feeling incredible pressure and responsibility he breaths these words to God. (Gen 24:12) “O Lord God of my master Abraham, please give me success this day and show kindness to my master Abraham”. He then asks God specifically to bring him the one who God had appointed, and asks God to reveal to him she is the one through her kindness at the well.
In Gen 24:15 it says “And it happened, before he had finished speaking, that behold Rebekah, who was a relative, came out with her pitcher on her shoulder. And the rest of is history.
In this story we are reminded that God goes before us in All things that are in alignment with His perfect will. We do not have to fret or worry. God has tasked Angels with assignments to help bring into alignment what God is wanting to do. Our job is to be like that of the servant, to just walk forward and to trust in our God. The key is to walk forward and to act in faith.
Are you allowing God to be God in your life each day?