Psalm 34:18 (NIV) 18 The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.
As a fairly new grandmother, I was named “Manna” by my oldest granddaughter who (two years ago at the time I had begun this day’s post) was then almost 17. She had just taken her first solo drive to church. We were in a season of blessing. Then and now, I am in love with my husband and he with me. We are healthy and live a wonderful balance of work, play, ministry, rest and laughter. In addition, we live in a home that has a constant parade of God’s creatures outside our windows. All of life seemed at peace.
Until a little over three years ago, no one could have described my life that way and because of the more troubled past seasons there has remained hurt and tension within the life of our family. Many prayers have gone up for healing and (though no one could see it happening) our God has been busily at work to bring family closer together.
Suddenly (in 2012) I was going to set a table for twelve, six more than for the years prior. Several days before Thanksgiving, I couldn’t wait to put the leaf in the table and surround it with chairs. I stood and stared at leeength of the table and the number of chairs with awe. This…was God! This view of the table shouted “FAMILY!” It looked and felt like every picture of Thanksgiving created. In my heart it was Norman Rockwell personified and there wasn’t a dish yet on the table!
I sat down and wrote this thought in my blog journal, “What seemed impossible only a few months prior was happening. God was healing. God is healing. He is ever at work on our behalf…yours and mine. Oh, that you and I will bask in that thought at the most impossible times!”
And now, as I write two years later, we are in one of the most excruciatingly painful seasons of our lives…ever. It can’t be justified or explained away with simplistic answers or carelessly tossed “quick fix” verses. The pain is raw for our precious one and for the rest of us. The journey will be one that must be walked through with love and all of the time and understanding needed. We will, of course, carefully offer spiritual (Scriptural) encouragement as God leads… and yet in many respects this journey will be between our precious one and God alone.
It is an indescribably confusing and painful time. Yet, despite the stark contrast between the 2012 Thanksgiving year to this one…because of our God I can tell you again… what seemed impossible only a few weeks prior is happening. God has been healing.
It is going to be a journey, yes. But our God is healing. Jesus is ever at work on our behalf…yours and mine…He longs to travel close beside us…to cover us with His loving arms.
Oh, that you and I will remember again and again to rehearse…to take comfort in thoughts of His healing and love even in the midst of the most raw and most impossible times!