May 27, 2013

Why Didn't God Heal Grace? (Part 1)

Why didn't God heal Grace?



I'm diving into deep theological waters today and I don't have my floaties on. I hope you'll put your swim trunks on and dive in with me. I'm going to start with my synopsis first and work out from there.

Synopsis: I don't know.

Ok, let's start there.

Actually, that's not totally true. We both do know and don't know.

We do know that if it was God's good plan to heal Grace, he would've. End of story.

Did we follow Biblical instruction for asking in faith for healing? Yes, absolutely we did.

According to the instructions in James 5, we were anointed with oil by the elders of our church and asked in faith for Grace's healing. Did people fast, asking and believing for Grace's healing? Yes. We absolutely prayed and believed and trusted that God was able. We prayed unceasingly. Many others prayed unceasingly.

Even the morning she passed, when I hadn't felt her movement and couldn't get her to move and I felt in my heart of hearts that she was gone, I laid in bed pleading with the Lord to do what only he could do. I didn't ask in hopeless desperation. I asked knowing that he is the only one able to raise from the dead and if it was his good will to do so, he would. And so I asked, not knowing the answer to the question at that moment.

Grace was not not healed because we lacked faith. And to believe that is to have an inaccurate understanding of Scripture concerning healing and suffering.

I love this quote from Nancy Guthrie, who lost both a son and daughter before their first birthday.

"Often, I see the body of Christ put so much into pursuing God for healing. With great boldness and passion and persistence, we cry out to God, begging for physical healing. And in these prayers, there is often a tiny P.S. added at the end where we say, 'If it be your will.'
But shouldn't we switch that around?
Shouldn't we cry out to God with boldness and passion and persistence in a prayer that says, 'God, would you please accomplish your will? Would you give me a willing heart to embrace your plan and your purpose? Would you mold me into a vessel that you can use to accomplish what you have in mind?' And then, perhaps, we could add a tiny P.S. that says, 'If that includes healing, we will be grateful.'
Isn't real faith revealed more through pursuing God and what he wants than through pursuing what we want?"

I read that a couple nights ago and it encapsulated what I desire to be true of us during this time (and always). We do not lose heart that Grace wasn't healed. We are not bitter that the end looked different than what we hoped and prayed for. We are not in despair. We are not hopeless.

Why?

Because there is a God that we believe and trust who sees an end that we simply cannot see in this life. I've heard this phrase over and over again and I know it to be true: God is always working for our good and his glory.

And those things are not mutually exclusive.

It is God's character, who he is, that brings me comfort. I know he is incapable of being unloving and unkind. It's simply not possible. Do I want Grace in my belly and ultimately in my arms? More than I can possibly express. Have I wished for someone else's story? More than you'll know. Do I hurt and grieve? All the time.

But do I trust in a sovereign God who sees the end from the beginning, who stands outside of time, who works all things after the counsel of his will (Ephesians 1:11), who causes all things to work together for good (Romans 8:28), who is unfailingly loving, who is unfathomable in might and splendor, who caused the morning stars to sing together for joy (Job 38:7) and told the seas where their limits are, who set the planets in rotation, who put the spots on the ladybug, who says he is with me always (Matthew 28:20), who is near to the broken-hearted and comforts the afflicted, who gives grace to the humble, who daily bears our burdens (Psalm 68:19), and who is the beginning and the middle and the end (Revelation 22:13)?

Yes. I trust that God.

Visiting Grace on her one-month birthday - May 26th, 2013.



I love the huge lilac bush that sits next to her spot.


My close friend left this surprise for us. She made that rock with Grace's name! I love it.




Part 2 to come.

18 comments:

  1. God's grace is so evident in your life and in your family. Be encouraged He is accomplishing His will and using you to proclaim His glory to others. Thank you for including us on your journey...

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  2. It is so encouraging and challenging to witness your strength and faith! Be blessed in knowing that these moments and your resolve during them is a blessing to so many.

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  3. You guys are so encouraging, thank you. To God be the glory. :)

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  4. Yes. Yes. Preach it! Love that Guthrie quote, too. Yowch.

    Love the photos! Grace and Eve kind of look similar to me...Eve had a prominent forehead that it looks Grace might have had, too. Maybe it's because they were born around the same gestation? And lilacs remind me of Eve, too! Glad that you get to enjoy them at Grace's spot.

    Your family, your heart, and your words are so very lovely. <3

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    1. Beth, I love that we've finally met and can't wait to hear more and more of your story! It could be because of their age, that's an interesting thought. And I want to hear about Eve's lilacs. :)
      Looking forward to knowing you better!

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  6. So beautiful Sara---so incredibly beautiful!

    Linda

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    1. I'm so glad that through pictures and stories, you get to be a part of our lives here still. Miss you!!!!

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  7. I pray for the kind of faith you have. It truly is unwavering. Loved the pics.

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    1. I pray for unwavering faith too! Daily grace from Christ, just what we need when we need it. :)

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  8. WOW! All I can say is WOW! Your faith is so amazing and incredible. When my mom died, I knew God wasn't "punishing" us. I knew he had it all under control. I just could not get some of my family to understand. I could never find the words. You inspire me!

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  9. Sara, dear Sara. You have written me several times. Forgive me that this is the first time I have responded. Life has been pretty crazy here and getting harder every day. What I want to say is thank you. Really I thank God for the words He gave you this very day. They are words I need to hear, words spoken by another sane, broken-hearted mom. Thank you for looking to the Lord - for hoping in the long view. I thank you but I know only God can enable you to have eyes to see those things - only God can move in your heart to give you such desires and such hope. I pray He continue to grow it in you and that it will flourish. I pray the same for my own heart.

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  10. Your words speak to my soul and your faith is awe inspiring. Thank you for sharing your journey with us. I learn from you with every post.

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  11. I always say "God does not promise bad things won't happen, but he promises to be there when they do." I hold tight to that when things get hard. I am truly amazed by your faith and I am so thankful you choose to share it with us.

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  12. Thank you for sharing your heart and your thoughts. We are praying for you guys daily and love you so much!

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  13. I was praying for you and Matt today before I saw this post. Your ability to share your heart, emotions, faith and thoughts is amazing. I pray that Almighty God comforts you and Matt in ways like never before. Thank you for your vulnerability in sharing. You are such an encouragement and inspiration for so many. Love & hugs from Durango!

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  14. I am Courtney Nichols cousin and I can't tell you how much I needed to read your post. I have a two year old son named Knox and recently got a call from his babysitter who discovered an infant boy not breathing. This was the first day that Owens mom had left him in her care. It has been a tragedy for all involved but your post has given me some peace and encouragement. I will share your story with Owens mom and the babysitter. Love, Linsey

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    1. Oh, that breaks my heart, I am so, so sorry to hear that. May the Lord cover them in his grace and steadfast love and carry them through these excruciatingly painful times.

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