Over the years I've watched women walk through almost every conceivable ordeal, some of which have been unbelievably tragic or complex. I have prayed with friends through their struggles to cope with terminal disease, rebellious sons and daughters, abusive husbands, and torturous memories of sexual abuse. I have wept with women at the graveside of a little child, in the hospital following an accident that left their loved on on life support, and at the bedside of a husband dying from cancer.
Through those experiences I have learned a foundational truth. Whether the problem is earth-shattering or a mere blip on the radar screen of our lives, ultimately, the real issue is this: "Will I surrender to God's hand and purposes in my life?" Those who refuse to relinquish control become emotionally and spiritually bankrupt - bitter, demanding, impossible to live with. Those who say in simple surrender, "Yes, Lord," emerge from the experience spiritually rich, and their lives become a source of grace and encouragement to others who are hurting.
I am realizing that this is something that I don't know how to do and it affects everything. From my relationship with God ("ahem, fix this and this and this"), to submitting to my husband (um, no control issues there!), to fear of how I would handle some devestating tragedy in our family ... I fight surrender to God's will in so, so, so many areas.
One way that I have specifically seen this played out is in the last area that I mentioned. We have been so abudantly blessed with two healthy little girls. There is a part of me that sometimes wonders when the other shoe will drop, so to say. Will it be with this sweet baby? As if I don't know enough friends struggling in my offline-life, I've become acquainted with several women bloggers who walk this path daily: Sarah and her daughter Addison and Trish and her daughter Ashley. This morning, I read of another Mom, already dealing with her daughter heart condition, has been diagnosed with a brain tumor. Yet, amazingly, their writings are so full of grace and wisdom and that peace that passeth all understanding ... I am floored. I'm not saying they don't question. I'm not saying there is never anger. But these are women that have learned an amazing truth:
For My thoughts are not your thoughts,
Nor are your ways My ways," declares the LORD.
For as the heavens are higher than the earth,
So are My ways higher than your ways
And My thoughts than your thoughts.
It's a good feeling to be searching the Scriptures on my own so that I can write these truths upon my heart as well.