I am a simple woman, wife, mom, daughter, sister, co-worker, friend, who has been placed in a situation of having to live out her faith in a way she never has before. I read today a statement C.S. Lewis made in his book, "A Grief Observed", that hit home to what I believe is happening; "You never know how much you really believe anything until its truth or falsehood becomes a matter of life or death to you." Yes! I got to quote C.S. Lewis and actually understand what he was saying. I understand it better than I ever thought I could.
|Painting by my friend|
Shen Jodi Goldman-Lewis.
She painted Ryan's portrait at the funeral.
Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.
Hebrews 11:1 Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.
Isaiah 41:10 fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
Philippians 4:13 I can do all things through him who strengthens me.
Deuteronomy 31:6 Be strong and courageous. Do not fear or be in dread of them, for it is the LORD your God who goes with you. He will not leave you or forsake you.”
Psalm 46:1 God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.
So, do I still believe these verses when my heart is broken and my life has been altered so fiercely? I can honestly say, "YES!". Is that because I am special, or unique, or have a closer connection to the Lord? Absolutely not. I am no different than you. We all have the same access to God's provisions. However, perhaps my simple thinking allows me the ability to accept His promises without over thinking them. Maybe my simple faith allows me the ability to take Him at His word. God's words are becoming the life-line that they were meant to be. They are giving me strength to look at the "whole story" and not just "my story". They are allowing me to see the good taking place beyond my own circumstances. They are allowing me to feel the joy of my son's life in absence as much as in his presence. They are allowing me to find joy, even in the pain. I will continue to trust that what God offers, He will provide. I trust what I believe because it has become a matter of life or death to me.
So I ask you to NOT be impressed by me and my simple faith, but rather the One that promises and fulfills His promises in me, Jesus Christ. Any strength you see in me comes from the One whom strengthens me, moment by moment. Any strength you see in me is available to you too. But you must believe in the power of the Cross to unleash all He offers.
1 Corinthians 1:18
For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.