March 11, 2022
For the One Trying To Make Sense of the Struggle
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"Lift up your eyes and look to the heavens: Who created all these? He who brings out the starry host one by one and calls forth each of them by name. Because of his great power and mighty strength, not one of them is missing." Isaiah 40:26 (NIV)
A few years ago when I visited family over the holidays, I brought home a puzzle for us to put together. Since then, it's become a tradition.
I think one of the reasons we all enjoy putting puzzles together is because they're predictable: No matter how long it takes, in the end, all the pieces fit. The final picture looks like the one on the box, the picture we were working towards all along.
Wouldn't it be amazing if life was just as easy?
But when things don't go according to plan ... it feels like we're staring at a million-piece puzzle dumped out without a picture on the box, and with pieces that look like they don't go together.
For me, this happened when I went through almost two years of infertility and lost my first baby. As a gal who thrives on knowing what's coming next, I didn't know how to deal with this devastating reality. I found myself picking up the pieces of what I thought life would look like and questioning God.
I just couldn't understand how a good God could allow something so good to suddenly fall apart.
On a day when I needed it most, I came across this verse, Isaiah 40:26: "Lift up your eyes and look to the heavens: Who created all these? He who brings out the starry host one by one and calls forth each of them by name. Because of his great power and mighty strength, not one of them is missing."
Did you catch that? "Not one of them is missing."
While the ache in my heart still hasn't quite gone away, this verse brings me so much comfort. Here are two truths it helps me cling to:
- When I look at my life and see only what I think is missing, I might need to remember my perspective is limited. Maybe my circumstances didn't turn out the way I thought they would, but I can only trust that one day the God who places every star "one by one" - and none are missing - will help me piece together the purpose of the hard things.
- If I only trust what I can control, I'll never fully trust God. Remembering that He's the Creator (not me), and that He is in charge of the details, puts my heart in a natural place of surrendering rather than fighting to control something I was never meant to control.
For a girl who likes order and predictability, you would think these lessons would bring the opposite of comfort. But instead, I've learned to see letting go of control as carrying one less burden. Sometimes, I'll take it so far as to go outside and do what Isaiah 40:26 says: Look up.
When I do this, I'm reminded I'm not supposed to have all the answers. Maybe, instead, resting in Him and moving forward with what I know today is the answer.
Friend, I'm not sure what hardship you're facing right now. But I can imagine you are trying to figure out the "why." You're holding a million puzzle pieces of what you thought life would look like.
Can I whisper some hope to your hurting heart today? We were never meant to bear the weight of having it all figured out. But we are meant to trust the One who does.
Heavenly Father, I want to be a woman who fully trusts You. Today I'm wondering why something did (or didn't) happen, and it hurts. Instead of begging You for an answer You don't owe me, I want You to fill me with peace and trust in You and Your plan for my life. I trust You. I love You. In Jesus' Name, Amen.
OUR FAVORITE THINGS
Motherhood and loss are two things that should not go together. Yet most of us either have experienced or know someone who has experienced infertility, a miscarriage, infant loss, or postpartum anxiety and depression. On our new, three-part series on The Proverbs 31 Ministries Podcast, "What No One Talks About: When the Journey of Motherhood Involves Disappointment, Suffering & Loss," we will be joined by Proverbs 31's biblical content specialist - author Wendy Blight - and Rachael Elmore, who is a licensed, professional counselor. Our deepest desire is that, through the content in these three episodes, you leave encouraged and more rooted in what Scripture says about the specific trials you are walking through. Click here to start listening.
If you've experienced loss in motherhood or know someone who is walking through that now, you can find comfort at our Prayer Wall. This is a place where your prayer requests can be posted and then prayed for by others. Share your own requests and pray for others at the Prayer Wall here.
FOR DEEPER STUDY
Proverbs 3:5-6, "Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight." (NIV)
Isaiah 40:28, "Do you not know? Have you not heard? The LORD is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary, and his understanding no one can fathom." (NIV)
Where in your life is God calling you to give up control, but you're resistant? Spend time today reflecting on what that is and what might be causing you to keep a tight grip on the situation, and ask God to soften your heart and help you trust Him. Share with us in the comments!
If you know someone in your life who is struggling with infertility or walking through the pain of a miscarriage, pause right now to pray over her.
© 2022 by Kaley Olson. All rights reserved.