When The Miracle Hasn’t Come…. What Then?

 

Have you ever had something you have been praying about, pouring your heart out to God over, even pleading with God for a miracle?  You long to see God perform a miracle right before your eyes!

My husband and I have had several different occasions where we pleaded with God for a miracle and He answered!  It was incredible to see God work in our lives!  There have also been other times when we have done the same thing, we cried out to God for a miracle, but the miracle never came.

What happens when that miracle does not come?  What then?

This is the question I have been mulling over in my own mind the past several weeks.

What happens when suffering remains and the miracle just isn’t there?

Earlier this year my husband and I discovered we were expecting another baby.  We were pleasantly surprised and very hopeful! My doctor had run all kinds of blood work and we begged God to let us keep this baby.

Appointment after appointment, a strong steady heartbeat could be heard. A growing little baby was forming inside of me and God was performing a miracle right inside my body! We were at the doctors office quite often and I was continuously poked and prodded, but I didn’t care! Anything to help us keep this baby alive was fine by us!

One particular afternoon we headed to the Dr again, it was an appointment simply for peace of mind and to hear the heartbeat. There is nothing quite like that sound, is there? A beautiful rhythm of life beating inside causes both comfort and hope to wash over an expectant mother!

Day after day my husband and I pleaded with the Lord on behalf of our baby and before we went in to see the Doctor we prayed in our car.  My heart was beginning to feel a bit anxious but taking my fears to the One who can help calm me is exactly what we did. On  this particular day however, when the doppler was placed on my stomach, there was only silence.

Deafening silence.

Just as there is nothing quite like the sound of a beating heart on a doppler, there is nothing quite like the sound of silence when all you long to hear is a heartbeat.

All the hopes and dreams we had for this sweet one, lay shattered in our hearts. Again.

Our sixth baby was in the arms of Jesus instead of still growing in my womb.

This was a tough tough place for me. I really wanted that baby!

My heart began to battle with the Lord. Questions of “why” and “what am I doing wrong?” were now what my prayers were filled with instead of expectant hope. This loss filled me with a brokenness I had not known for a long while.  A grief so deep it would take something only God could do to pull me out. I just could not believe we found ourselves in this place again, for the 6th time.

Have you been there before?  Expected a miracle from the Lord, heart full of faith, and yet that miracle did not happen.

During this time I had been reading in the book of Psalms and as I read through Psalm 119 one particular morning, I was struck by one verse.  I stopped, re-read it, underlined it, and wrote it on my bathroom mirror so I would see it often!

Verse 28 says, “My soul melteth for heaviness: strengthen thou me according unto thy word.

This verse was written just for me!  Seriously though, isn’t it incredible when we are reading through Scripture and a verse we have read numerous times before suddenly seems to jump off the pages and it is exactly what we need.

My soul really did feel like it was melting. I was so discouraged and hurting, but the latter half of that verse reminded me of where I needed to find my source of strength. In His Word.

The past few months I have slowly been taking my time reading through the book of Psalms and have been finding a balm for my heart in the Word of God.

I still have days of struggle, more days than I care to admit!  I still get tripped up and battle with the flesh and spirit, but the Lord always has a way of reminding me what I need to get back to. Where I can find my encouragement and my true source of healing.

Two months ago we said good-bye to our expectant little baby boy, and though tears still tend to be numerous because I miss him terribly, though my heart still aches to know him here on earth, to kiss his soft little baby cheeks, to love on him as only a Mama can do, I trust. I know that our little guy is being loved on with a love so much greater than mine!  A love so much more perfect than I ever could give. I trust in our good God because He has proven Himself time again that even when I do not understand, even when I hurt, He is so worthy of my trust. I can run to Him with all the cares of my heart and let His ever capable shoulders carry my hurts.

Psalm 116:2 says,Because he hath inclined his ear unto me, therefore will I call upon him as long as I live.”  That verse tells me that God is leaning in, just to hear my prayer! The God of the Universe is interested in hearing the prayer of my heart. The incredible truth of this verse is something I cannot even wrap my mind around!  How can I not help but pray, when His ear is turned towards me?

The verse currently  on my mirror is one that the Lord recently reminded me of.  Lamentations 3:24, “The Lord is my portion, saith my soul; therefore will I hope in him.” 

When hurts come our way, when life seems to not be turning out how we anticipated, when our miracle is taking a little bit longer to happen than we anticipated, we can hope in Him! We can find rest in Him while we wait {Psalm 37:7, Rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for him} but keep on hoping in Him!

 

Many Blessings,

Wendy

 

 

 

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When Life Hurts and the enemy is Bearing Down

It had been a long night that had accompanied an even longer day.  Sleep was evading me and I quietly slipped out of bed, found my favorite cozy pair of slippers, and silently tip-toed my way into our living room.

Curling up in my familiar spot on our brown micro-suede couch I reached for my Bible. With puffy eyes I cracked open God’s Word, not really knowing even where to begin reading.  My heart was so broken.  I had a desperate need to pray but no words could even form on my lips or in my head!  I needed to hear from God!  I needed to know that He saw every tear that had trickled down my cheeks, the heart-wrenching sobs that wracked my body.  I needed that reassurance of knowing that He understood and was close by.  At the moment all I was hearing was the lies the enemy was telling me.  “Failure. Disappointment. God doesn’t really love you.  If He did, then why does He continue to not answer this one simple request? You say you know He can, so why doesn’t He? He doesn’t care in fact He isn’t even listening!”

My world had been rocked.  I had had so much faith in God, I believed with every ounce of my being that He was going to answer the pleas of my heart.  But on this particular day, it became evident that His will and my prayers were not matching up.  My heart was shattered, again. prayer

I began searching for a familiar verse that I often share with others who are hurting, but in my search for the particular reference, I landed in Psalm 143.  As my eyes scanned the verses tears pooled in my eyes and I thought, “Yes, this describes exactly how I feel!”

Psalm 143:1-4, Hear my prayer, O Lord, give ear to my supplications: in thy faithfulness answer me, and in thy righteousness. And enter not into judgment with thy servant: for in thy sight shall no man living be justified. For the enemy hath persecuted my soul; he hath smitten my life down to the ground; he hath made me to dwell in darkness, as those that have been long dead. Therefore is my spirit overwhelmed within me; my heart within me is desolate.”

Everything David was saying in this passage could be echoed in my heart.  I felt beaten down by the enemy.  The weight of the burden felt impossible to bear.  My spirit truly was overwhelmed and yes, my heart felt desolate.  “God, where are You?” was the question racing through my head.

Trials, they have a way of knocking the wind out of us sometimes, don’t they?  We long to hear from God just as David exclaimed in verses 7-8, Hear me speedily, O Lord: my spirit faileth: hide not thy face from me, lest I be like unto them that go down into the pit. Cause me to hear thy lovingkindness in the morning; for in thee do I trust: cause me to know the way wherein I should walk; for I lift up my soul unto thee.”

While in the midst of our difficulty that is when the enemy most often strikes.  We are worn out, weakened by our affliction, and more prone to the  attacks of our enemy.  That is just how cunning and low our enemy really is.  He delights in kicking us when we are down and doing his best to drive a wedge between us and our Savior.

I really believe David knew this and recognized the fingerprints of the enemy throughout his trial.   I love how David ended this precious chapter. Read these next few verses with me, will you?Quicken me, O Lord, for thy name’s sake: for thy righteousness’ sake bring my soul out of trouble. And of thy mercy cut off mine enemies, and destroy all them that afflict my soul: for I am thy servant.”

Even though David was going through such heartache and felt utterly defeated, he remembered Whose he was.  He remembered that no matter the lies the enemy fed him, he fought back and spoke truth to his soul and proclaimed “God, I am YOURS! Reveal that to my enemy!”

Friend, even when we don’t feel like it, even when our flesh wants to believe the lies the enemy whispers (and even shouts!) in our ears, we must remember, if we have claimed the free gift of salvation we are HIS!  We must speak truth to ourselves first, even if the feelings aren’t there.  Sometimes our feelings need a little bossing around, don’t they? This is something I am still learning myself!  When the enemy speaks lies shout back with TRUTH!

God is there.  He is here!  He is with me in my trial just as He is with you in yours.  He is on your mountain top and also in your valley.  When we can’t sense or feel or see His presence, remember, He is still there.  He has promised to never leave us or forsake us.  He will make beauty of our ashes, one day.  He will work it together for good.  In the meantime, hang on and cling to those promises!  You are not alone and you belong to HIM!

 

Many Blessings,

Wendy

 

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My Newly Released book, Made Only For Heaven

Ten years ago my brand new husband and I had just celebrated our five month anniversary when we discovered we were expecting our very first baby!  The moment the stick turned pink and we were instantly delighted!  Hopes and dreams for our coming baby filled our hearts to the brim and our excitement could hardly be contained!  Our very own baby!

Fast forward a few weeks and I found myself at home recovering from Coveremergency surgery and along with being a new bride, I was now a grieving mother.  Hopes and dreams of our expectant baby had come crashing down around us and shattered into a thousand tiny pieces.

Miscarriage is not a common topic and I found myself dealing with a grief so deep I dared not mention it.  Little did we know we would not just lose our first baby, but the Lord would also give and take four more of our expectant little ones.  One of which I labored, delivered, and held our sweet Elioenai Matthew.

Delivering our stillborn son was the hardest thing I have ever had to go through.  He was beautiful.  He was perfectly formed and it made no sense as to why he had died.  The day after I delivered him I was discharged from the hospital and instead of walking out with a precious healthy baby cradled in my arms, I left with only a hard box filled with mementos the hospital so graciously gave us.  As my husband and I walked out, everything in my heart burned inside! I wanted to turn around and RUN back to my baby boy, scoop him up, and hold him once more!  This just was not fair!

Guilt, pain, loneliness, grief, and a real struggle with God’s plan for my happily ever after captivated my life.  This was not the story I ever expected for my life.

But God.  I am so thankful for those “But God” moments!

God took my fragile shattered heart and piece by piece He ever so gently began to put it back together.

There were and still are, so many tears.  To this day, five and a half years later, I cannot look you in the eye and talk about our Eli boy without a lump lodging in my throat and tears streaming down my cheeks.  I have come to learn though that it is okay, and I am not alone!

Grief is real, it is a valley, but grace can go along with it.

God is big enough and strong enough to handle our real struggles!  He is able to grant us the faith we need when our faith is wavering.  He is touched by our pain (Hebrews 4:15, “For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.“), and He never expects us to walk through this life alone!  His peace will surpass our understanding and His grace will prove to be sufficient.

Because of God’s grace, I have been able to write and complete my newly released book, Made Only For Heaven.  This book is designed to help others who have been through this journey, or are still on it, to share that there is HOPE for Healing!  It is okay to grieve!  It is okay to weep!  It is important to remember, this is not your fault!  I want to come along side you and let you know, you sweet friend, are not alone!  I get the pain you are going through, it runs deep, and it really is not anything you just “get over”, we simply learn to move forward.

If you or someone you love has been through a loss like these, please share with them this book.  I yearn to encourage them through sharing my own journey and the struggles and victories through it.

Sometimes when someone we know suffers a loss like this we just do not know what to say and we find ourselves putting our foot in our mouth in an attempt to be helpful!  This book will give those who have never endured such a loss, to get a glimpse into the pain their loved one is going through.  Sometimes they don’t need our words, they need our shoulder to cry on.

I am thankful God’s grace is sufficient and that He will provide the healing we need.

Head on over to Amazon.com, barnesandnoble.com, or on the ibook app and get your copy today!

Many Blessings,

Wendy

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Five Years in Heaven

On this day five years ago, I was at the hospital.

My husband and I were alone, no visitors came to the hospital.  No prayers prayed with us by our Pastor or other church leaders in that hospital room, as we ventured down one of the most difficult paths we have ever been on.

Five years ago my labor was induced, but I was only five months pregnant.

We had just moved to a new town two weeks previously.  Our things were not even unpacked.  We had a new pastor, a new church family, and we had not yet had a chance to really get to know any of them yet.  A brand new chapter in our life that began with a trial I never thought would be mine.

There we were, in the hospital.  Tears streaming down our faces as I labored and eventually gave birth to our sweet little baby boy, born still.  precious feet

Five years ago I remember how God’s grace overwhelmed us. I remember all of those events like it was yesterday.  I remember the doctor saying, “The baby is out” and the moment those words slipped from his mouth, God’s peace engulfed my husband and I like never before.  His presence was nearly tangible!

Our tears dried, and all I could say as I was handed my sweet and precious baby boy was, “He is beautiful!  Look what God has made!”  Our Elioenai Matthew, our gift from God whose eyes would only ever behold our Savior.

That time we had with him was far to short compared to the lifetime I had dreamed with my baby boy.  Nothing can prepare a mother for going through a labor and delivery and instead of walking out a few days later with a sweet new born sleeping soundly, she instead only carries a box full of momentous.  A box containing blankets, jewelry, even photographs you never imagined would be yours.  The only pictures you will ever have of your baby born still.

Those months that followed were a journey where God taught me about His grace in ways I never thought I would learn.  God taught me about how He is worthy of my trust, even when my heart was in shambles.  He was so careful with my fragile heart, but He stretched my faith.  He walked with me through the shadow of death with my baby boy.

Oh the tears were numerous, there were even struggles with anger, battles with guilt, and learning to be content with silence when I asked, “Why, God?”, was not easy.

However, five years later, though I am still not able to talk about that time in our lives without tears stinging my cheeks, I can honestly say “God is always good!”  I can stand before you and declare {by God’s grace}, praise for our God, because He is so worthy!  My heart will probably always ache for that little boy, it will probably still be a long while before I can talk about that time without tears being shed.  But friend, please hear this.

Our circumstances should not determine how much or how little we praise God.  He is worthy of our praise, all of the time.  Whether everything seems right in our world or it all seems upside down.  Whether we can hold our children in our arms, or we long to kiss their cheeks in Heaven, He is still worthy of our praise.  He is still worthy of our love and devotion to Him.  He is worthy!  He understands the pain, He understands the ache, He even understands the struggle, and He is not untouched by our pain!

By God’s grace, while I am still here on earth, I will serve, and love, and work for Christ.

But I will also continue to ask Him to hug my baby boy I long to hold in my arms!  The little boy I long to listen to as he tells of the adventures he has had.  I will keep asking the Lord to tell my little boy I love him so much and how much I miss him.  I will cry and remember the pain, but I will also always remember and thank God for His grace.  His grace that truly is sufficient.

I am So thankful HE carries us!

This song was written by a friend of ours.  A song that shares through music, the words of our heart!

My Hiding Place

On Monday of this week I had a Doctors appointment.  Nothing out of the ordinary, but rather it was my 16 week prenatal check-up.  It was kind of exciting too because there was a possibility we would be able to find out the gender of our expectant baby.

What we were not expecting was there to be no heartbeat.  If you have followed my blogs at all you know that this is not something that is new to us.  This was rather our 5th child to enter Heaven before we were able to say “hello” in person.

Tears were and continue to be numerous.  Both from grief and hormones.

Tomorrow I will go in and have surgery to remove my sweet, once expectant baby.  It will not be an easy day, that is a certainty.  However, I know from the past that God’s grace will entirely engulf my husband and I.

At times like this I kind of feel like a turtle.  I feel as though I climb into my shell and grieve.  I can’t handle face to face talking with others just yet.  I talk to my husband a lot and I cry out to my Jesus, my great I AM.  He is everything I need Him to be always, but I feel His presence even more at times like these.  When I compare myself to a turtle, I am not saying I am trying to escape from reality, rather, I run to my Hiding Place.  I go to the comforting arms of my I AM.  This is too much for my heart to handle, humanly.  I feel so much pain as I say good-bye to my sweet baby yet again and am reminded of our other losses.  I need this alone time to just dwell in my Hiding Place where I can find true comfort.  Our earthly loss is certainly Heavens gain.

With each loss I have found different verses of Scripture to be such a comfort to my soul.  This time around I have found 1 Peter 4:19 to be especially comforting.  It says, “Wherefore let them that suffer according to the will of God commit the keeping of their souls to him in well doing, as unto a faithful Creator.”  I also love how it is written in the ESV which says, “Therefore let those who suffer according to God’s will entrust their souls to a faithful Creator while doing good.”

Our hearts are broken, but God is still so good.  I truly desire to glorify God through whatever He allows us to go through.  To me it is not worth getting angry over, or to become bitter about because I know if I chose that route I am stepping outside from under God’s protection which can put my entire family at risk.  Rather, I will grieve, I will work through the emotions that can sometimes seem overwhelming, I will trust the Lord, I will cling to my I AM.  By God’s grace we will come through this shining brighter for HIM.

Because of God’s grace I can truly say, It Is Well With My Soul.

There are a few songs that have meant so much to me, but this one has been extra special this time around.