A few years ago, I was sitting in a hospital room (seems like a common theme with me) having a dialog with the Lord. Really, I was ranting. I was upset, I was tired and I was on the verge of despair, but not quite there. At that moment I was just angry. “Lord, why? Why us? Why me? We are doing your will!”
I was like a crazed pre-teen ranting to her father over the injustice of it all.
“You SAID it would be okay! This is NOT okay! We stopped contracepting! We are open to life! We followed our conscience to do your will and we were rewarded with Lily Gianna who died before we heard her heartbeat. We were devastated but comforted knowing she was in your arms. Then we waited in anguish to conceive again because the doctor said there was a chance of having cancer. I faithfully got my blood drawn each week and, yes, we cheated a little bit and began trying to conceive a tad earlier than the doctor would have liked, but we knew you were still in our corner and my numbers were perfect. I wasn’t even that upset about having gestational diabetes this time around. Spending several hours in the hospital getting an IV because I was dehydrated was tolerable, but now you’ve crossed the line, God. You’ve asked too much of me. You misled me.”
I had spent the night in the ICU after what turned out to be life-saving surgery to unblock my kidney and stop the infection that was working to destroy my body. Both baby and I had survived the ordeal, but I was stuck in the hospital recuperating and concern had turned from me to the baby. The doctors thought the baby’s heartrate was dipping too low at times and I was under the threat of an emergency delivery. I was broken and tired of it all and I lashed out. I shouted at the Guy who loved me so much that He willingly suffered humiliation and torture. I was accusing Him of being a liar. I might as well have been in the crowd that day, yelling “Crucify him! Crucify him!” Such was my anger and disgust.
Then I was silent. And in that silence, I felt His presence. I felt Him telling me that I was okay.
I immediately did what any pregnant woman would do when she is a ball of nerves and confusion and has just done something really embarrassing. I began to laugh hysterically. “Okay God, you’re right. You said it would be okay. You didn’t say it would be easy.”
Lord, help me to follow you in the midst of my suffering. Help me to say yes to your will, even when it is painful.
My child, when you come to serve the Lord, prepare yourself for trials. Set your heart right and be steadfast, and do not be impetuous in time of calamity. Cling to him and do not depart, so that your last days may be prosperous. Accept whatever befalls you, and in times of humiliation be patient. For gold is tested in the fire, and those found acceptable, in the furnace of humiliation. Trust in him, and he will help you; make your ways straight, and hope in him.