Step 3 Trust Him
After three miscarriages, I had to face the fact that I might never become a mother. The first loss was the most shocking and heart-rending, but each successive loss was scarier than the last and at age 33, my biological clock was definitely ticking. Between the first and second miscarriages, I had also moved and found a new church. After the first loss, God provided a “safety net” of friends, co-workers and family who surrounded me with love and prayer. After the second loss I was again devastated and I remember consciously asking God, searching for that net. He provided. My new church family came through for me, surrounding me again and again with prayer and local support.
It’s easy for us to feel like God is not there. We wonder how He could let the grief-giving loss happen in the first place. But He is there. He sent exactly the right people to come alongside me each time. God provided what I needed. I didn’t have what I wanted – my babies. But he provided what I needed to see me through the grief. And between the first and second losses, I had learned to look for him, for his hand of care and provision.
Trust God’s Word
How can we trust God when he lets such awful things happen? We can trust his word.
Jesus tells us plainly that we will have trouble in this world. He also made sure we knew when he returned to heaven that he would send us a Comforter in the form of the Holy Spirit.
“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” John [16:33]
“But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name,
will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you.” John [14:26]
God cares about us. In Him we can have peace.
He gave us the Holy Spirit. Various translations of John [14:26] refer to the Holy Spirit as our Advocate, Helper, Comforter, and Counselor. We can trust God’s word that He provides himself, in the form of the Holy Spirit, to comfort and counsel us during our times of crisis.
God cares about our cares:
“Cast your cares on the LORD and He will sustain you; He will never let the righteous be shaken.” Psalm [55:22]
“Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.” 1 Peter 5:7
God takes no joy in our pain. But He does not let it go to waste. He can use that pain to make our faith stronger. Ask Him to help you. Ask Him to carry all your pain, fear, or sorrow.
Trust God’s Record
There are times of joy when we have felt God with us and learned from it. But for most of us, it’s during trials and times of crisis when we learn and grow the most. If you are a new Christian, find someone who has been a Christian much longer and seek her advice. Ask her about God’s record in her life. Pick up your Bible and study God’s record with his people. Consider his faithful record with the Israelites; consider the story of Ruth and Naomi and how God provided for each of them after experiencing the loss of their husbands. Now consider the book of Hosea and how God used Hosea as his representative to show that God will continue to love us even if we are continually wayward. If you are a lifelong Christian, look back over the years – go over his record and your experiences with him.
We do not base our faith on the experiential; we base it on His word. But God uses our experiences with Him to grow, increase and gradually mature our faith. Ask God to help you trust Him through the darkness of intense grief and wearying times of long trials.
“You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you.” Isaiah 26:3
Trust God with Why
We want to know “Why?” Why, Lord, why my child? Why my husband? Why me? Why do I have to go through the loss of my job, my house, this pastorate, a divorce, being widowed too young, it’s not fair!
It wasn’t fair for Joseph to be thrown into a pit and sold into slavery. And that was just the beginning. His ‘aha’ moment came when his family showed up looking for food – the nation of Israel was saved from starvation because their brother had the keys to the storehouses. Jeremiah preached his entire life and never saw results. Why? God may choose to reveal to us the ‘why’ of various trials and crises in our lives – or he may not. We live in a fallen world, and we have an enemy who prowls around seeking to devour us. Trouble comes. God uses those troubles to increase our faith and our dependence on him.
Many people develop what I call ‘reluctant ministries’. I didn’t seek a ministry for people who had lost an unborn child. But at times in my life, I have been able to minister effectively to other women because I have experienced the same pain. Sometimes God chooses to reveal the purpose in the pain, other times we may have to wait until we get to heaven to learn the reason.
Knowing why won’t erase the hurt. When faced with his brothers, Joseph’s pain surged to the surface and he wept so loudly, the entire palace heard him.
Our present work is to trust God. Trust His word, trust His record.