Monday, October 02, 2006

He's the Boss

In what situation has the Lord moved in a way that you struggle with?
How did that circumstance bring you closer to Him?

There are so many.

The most recent "biggie" immediately comes to mind: moving cross country from Texas to Connecticut, leaving behind family and friends that I had grown to regard as family. Did I mention that my son Kyle was two months old when we considered this move, and just barely three months old when we hit the road? Did I mention that my daughter was about to start school for the first time? Because of that, we hurried the move, and left before our house was sold and lived in a long-term hotel for three weeks? But when I think more about that experience, it reminds me that I didn't really struggle. I submitted. To God's plan of how, and what might have been the hardest part, when.

The reason that I was able to react in that way is because I have learned and grown closer to God in previous circumstances. I had begun to depend on His sovereignty, knowing that His plans are best, and that he has the beginning, middle, and end of my journey with Him all charted out.

In 2002 when I was sixteen weeks pregnant, I went to the doctor and there was no heartbeat. The baby I had been carrying without complication had died that week. There is no doubt in my mind that that situation was one of the things that God used for my good and His glory.

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. Romans 8:28-29 (emphasis mine)

A month or so after the baby died, my husband's company had basically been dissolved, leaving him without a job. Would having a pregnant wife have added to his anxiety over a job search? Yes, it would have. Would he have resented the baby? Of course not, but was God's perfect timing at work in our family? Possibly.

I struggle with pride and a lack of humility. I do know that God has given me the gift of teaching and exhortation, but that still doesn't mean that everything I have to say always needs to be expressed. It also means that I should be a careful learner, too, sometimes curbing my desire to speak so that I can choose to listen and learn. It doesn't seem to be a logical conclusion, but one of the biggest lessons I learned in the loss of my baby was humility. In the face of "Why did this happen to me? To my innocent baby? To my sweet preschool daughter who mourned the loss of her expected sibling?" there was no other place to rest except in the wiser plan of God. He knows best. He uses all things. I am not the boss. I do not have all the answers. Although I have free will, I am not the master of my own destiny. Thank God for that. And thank God that He is willing to do the hard things required to conform me to his image.

Am I glad that I lost that baby boy, who I got to see and hold after his birth was induced? Most certainly I am not. Can I now look back and see some sort of God's purpose in this day in the life of my faithwalk? You bet I can. Have I even reached the point in God's grace, that I would not even go back now and change it if I could? I honestly have.

How would you answer this question? It is likely with a problem bigger than those I have shared. Perhaps God has taught you through watching someone else. Maybe you are still learning. Link up to Faithlifts Faith Builders Monday Meme, so that we can all be blessed by your journey and experience, or at the very least, head over there and read how God is building the faith of others.


org junkie said...

The first thing I thought of when reading your story was "wow can you imagine going through that type of pain without faith". Thank you for sharing that with us Jennifer. I'm always truly inspired by those that see the good (GOD) in all circumstances. I still struggle with this but this was an excellent reminder. Laura

Heather said...

Sometimes I wish we could learn the lesson on the other side without having to go through the situation. Maybe God could put us to sleep for the surgery.
Thank you for sharing.

Katrina said...

Thank you, Jennifer. It's always encouraging to see how God has worked in the lives of others. It's amazing how God uses situations to prepare us for the future, and to teach us more about ourselves and about Him.

Jill said...

Thanks for sharing Jennifer. Sometimes hearing how others have made it through their struggles helps us to walk through ours with grace.

Janice (5 Minutes for Mom) said...

thank you for sharing and for being a part of faith lifts!

I am so sorry for your pain and loss. I know what hurt me most about my miscarriage was my 4 yr old son's pain over it.

God Bless you! {{{hugs}}}

e-Mom said...

I trust you have mourned your loss. I've noticed that God has met me most profoundly in my times of sorrow. His comfort (and hope) have been palpable. I'm sorry you have suffered this way Jennifer, and thanks for sharing your story of faith.