We go through life knowing so little about the “why, when, and what” of things that happen in our lives, that it becomes human nature to be discouraged or feel lost when we enter tragedy. Wouldn’t it be great if when affliction entered our life we would hear from above “Relax, this is a test of your emergency faith system, it is only a test. If this were an actual emergency it would be followed by my instruction“. All too many times we plead out for understanding and try to find all sorts of ways to escape the situation, angry or frustrated as to why something happened, we demand an explanation. “Why did this happen to me?”
I have heard so many verses of faith this week along with other sermons that speak to going through trials and suffering in your life. The first that speaks to my heart is from Romans 5:3-4 “ And not only that, but we also rejoice in our afflictions, because we know that affliction produces endurance, endurance produces proven character, and proven character produces hope.” This verse speaks closely to Romans 8:18 “I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be joy revealed in us.” To boil down the last two weeks of what God has spoke into my heart. If you have faith, that ALL good and perfect things come from above, that is all things come through Christ hands…then you must also find hope in your situation—no matter what it is—that this thing your going through is from Christ.
I’ve spoke to this on our blog before, that God is your heavenly Father, and that sometimes the Lord chastises us to teach us something, to reveal something greater in our lives, for which our current human understanding can’t compute. He is treating us as a Father, he disciplines us out of love. Steven Furtick tweeted earlier this week “God sometimes employs human disappointment to shape a void He intends to fill with HIMSELF.” I have also heard many talks lately about how God allows troubles in our lives so we can draw nearer to him and find him. I have heard the saying many times “God, drove me to my knees” Hebrews 12:6-8 says “for the Lord disciplines the one He loves and punishes every son He receives. Endure [suffering] as discipline: God is dealing with you as sons. For what son is there that a father does not discipline? But if you are without discipline-which all receive-then you are illegitimate children and not sons.” I heard a talk on prayer yesterday that said “if you haven’t gone through suffering” then you need to check your positioning with Christ. No where in the Bible does it state that our lives will be peachy-keen. It does state that God will walk with us through those trials. I have heard many say that they have “never felt closer to God” than these moments in their lives. He doesn’t allow bad things in our lives to discourage us, beat us down, and destroy us. He allows suffering to draw us close, so that we would find sufficient Grace in him, and to take us to a better place in our lives. I have spent 19+ months stumbling along the way to figure this out, but it is becoming clearer to me.
I smile this morning from ear to ear, because we found out last evening that we are #1 on the siblings list and #19 on the girls list. We have spent 19+ months enduring and suffering some of the hardest days of our lives. This doesn’t count the years of infertility treatments that prefaced our adoption and the months building up to getting on the official list. I can not declare that our journey is over, only God knows that in his perfect timing. What I can declare is that I feel in a much better place in my life because of the suffering I have endured. I have never felt closer to our Father, and I have drawn closer to him through this. It’s one of those things you see in the Bible like that takes sometimes to understand… 2 Corinthians 12: 8-10 “Concerning this, I pleaded with the Lord three times to take it away from me. But He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.” Therefore, I will most gladly boast all the more about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may reside in me. So I take pleasure in weaknesses, insults, catastrophes, persecutions, and in pressures, because of Christ. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” This verse is amazing. I truly feel I wouldn’t change a step of the path that we have taken for this very reason above. Thank you to so many that have continued to pray for us and comfort us along the way. It has truly meant the world to know that we have so many on our side, and its been truly amazing to see the Power of Christ work over the last 3 years in his perfect timing.