Most all of us have had bad days. Some have even had rough weeks, or months. I have written in the past about the loss of a child, but I have not given much detail in the past. I must note that it was one of, if not the worst, days I have had to experience, especially in its context and circumstances.
I had been away on a conference in April 2014, and arrived home later than had been expected. My wife and step-daughter had waited up for me, and when I arrived home, I was greeted by a wonderful “Daddy!” from my step-daughter. We had a meal together, then I gave them each a gift I had got for them on the trip. And Ana went off to bed in a very cheery mood.
Next day my wife and I spent much of the morning and early afternoon chilling in the lounge. Our conversation eventually went to the fact that Ana hadn’t come down yet. She had been suffering from insomnia, so we initially took it as a good sign that she was able to sleep. But, as the day drew on, we called to her, and their was no response. I went up to check on her and found her lifeless in her bed. She was dressed in the new t shirt I had gotten her as a gift, and she had passed in her sleep, she was 22. There was nothing I could do. She had been gone for hours.
My and her mother’s world collapsed. There were days of confusion, mind slips, and tears. We had lost a treasure, but held on to God. Though prayer was hard, and the presence of the Lord at times seemed far away, we held on to His promises.
We had barely come to terms with her loss, when a month to the day later, my wife’s adoptive mother passed. This created even more hurt, and trials of a legal kind in regards to arrangements, and the estate.
Our world was in limbo, and the stress was great, and in June it took its toll when I suffered a heart attack. Life does at times assail. But God’s love is sufficient. I did mend, but the trials of life had not relented. We were just starting to put our lives back into order when in October 2015 my wife was diagnosed with advanced cancer. We entered into the world of hospitals, chemo, and radiation. The treatments themselves have caused massive health issues through side effects. Our trials continue until even now.
Scripture tells us that He will not put more onto us than we can endure. I can attest to this. I have hurt, cried, and pleaded with Him in the last 3 and half years. Through it all He does remain – Good.
On Sunday, the worship centred on the sufficiency of God in our lives. “He that is in us” is greater than the trials of the world. This is especially moving, as our worship leader, my dear brother Joe, is now in the kind of trials which I have come through (above). Will my readers please raise up Joe and his wife Claire in their prayers, for their continued faith, strength, and example as Joe awaits word on the health of his father. We hold him up for prayer as well.
I am strengthened, and encouraged that Brother Joe, not only continues to lead worship (even in his distress), but he does so in a way to lift up others.
When the world assails, let us remember to turn to Him who is greater than the world.