I’ve been in a total funk, spiritually. I mentioned that one of our friends died last month, and I guess that was just the last straw. On top of all the other stuff we’ve dealt with this year, it was too much. I didn’t understand. And I was mad. One night Anderson and I were talking in the car about praying, and I just abruptly said, (yelled?) “What’s the point?” He was like, “Whaaaaat?” And I said, “What’s the point in any of this? Why do we pray if it doesn’t change anything?” That’s when I realized that bitterness was starting to creep into my heart. It happened fast. And even though I was in a bad place spiritually I didn’t want that bitterness to grow any more. But I didn’t know how to stop it either. I had still been reading my Bible and praying (halfheartedly) during all of this, and that certainly wasn’t helping. So I decided to fast. I know you’re not supposed to talk about fasting (because it can be taken as bragging or whatever), but I figure since I’m not doing it anymore and since I share enough for you to know I’m no super-Christian, it’s okay. 🙂
My faith was completely rocked. More than it’s ever been. This certainly wasn’t the first hard time in my life. Not even the first trial I’d dealt with this year! But it was the first time I’d felt such a strong desire to unceasingly cry out to God on someone else’s behalf. To plead with him on my knees for my friend. So I just felt cheated when he died. Like God had let down so many people. He didn’t answer my desperate cries the way I wanted him to. I know that eternity in Heaven is incomparable to life on this earth. I get it. But it’s hard to grasp the idea of eternity while living with the realities of this world. The reality of two little girls who don’t have a dad anymore. And a young wife and mother who now wears the title, “widow.”
None of it made sense. And I wanted God to explain himself. To say something. Anything. I knew He didn’t have to, but I asked him to please speak to me while I fasted. To remind me. I needed to remember. I was hoping He’d write on a wall or something. He’s done it before! I mean I was actually in the bathroom one day staring at the wall and thought, “Hmm. It would be really cool if God just wrote a message up there right now.” (I blame the lack of nutrients I was consuming at the time.) He didn’t write on the wall or in the sky or send me a text; but he did remind me.
One day I was reading Mark 5:22-43. I’ve been border-line obsessed with this passage ever since I found out about my brain tumor. It’s about Jesus bringing a dead girl back to life. Three of the gospels talk about it, but I like Mark’s account best!
Then one of the synagogue leaders, named Jairus, came, and when he saw Jesus, he fell at his feet. He pleaded earnestly with him, “My little daughter is dying. Please come and put your hands on her so that she will be healed and live.” So Jesus went with him.
A large crowd followed and pressed around him. And a woman was there who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years. She had suffered a great deal under the care of many doctors and had spent all she had, yet instead of getting better she grew worse. When she heard about Jesus, she came up behind him in the crowd and touched his cloak, because she thought, “If I just touch his clothes, I will be healed.” Immediately her bleeding stopped and she felt in her body that she was freed from her suffering.
At once Jesus realized that power had gone out from him. He turned around in the crowd and asked, “Who touched my clothes?”
“You see the people crowding against you,” his disciples answered, “and yet you can ask, ‘Who touched me?’ ”
But Jesus kept looking around to see who had done it. Then the woman, knowing what had happened to her, came and fell at his feet and, trembling with fear, told him the whole truth. He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering.”
While Jesus was still speaking, some people came from the house of Jairus, the synagogue leader. “Your daughter is dead,” they said. “Why bother the teacher anymore?”
Overhearing what they said, Jesus told him, “Don’t be afraid; just believe.”
He did not let anyone follow him except Peter, James and John the brother of James. When they came to the home of the synagogue leader, Jesus saw a commotion, with people crying and wailing loudly. He went in and said to them, “Why all this commotion and wailing? The child is not dead but asleep.” But they laughed at him.
After he put them all out, he took the child’s father and mother and the disciples who were with him, and went in where the child was. He took her by the hand and said to her, “Talitha koum!” (which means “Little girl, I say to you, get up!”). Immediately the girl stood up and began to walk around (she was twelve years old). At this they were completely astonished. He gave strict orders not to let anyone know about this, and told them to give her something to eat.
I’ve read this story many times over the last few months, and felt so encouraged by the fact that Jesus healed Jairus’ daughter. Encouraged, because He can do anything; if it’s part of His plan. But while I was fasting God showed me something different. Not the part about the girl being healed, but what Jesus said to her father. Jairus had gone to Jesus and pleaded on behalf of his daughter. He asked Jesus to heal her. He believed. But while they were headed back to his home, some friends came and told him his daughter was dead. Jesus had to have seen the despair in Jairus’ eyes. The disappointment. He knew Jesus could heal her, so why did He let her die? Why didn’t He answer his request the way he wanted? Then Jesus looked at him and simply said, “Don’t be afraid. Just believe.” Just believe that I know what’s about to happen. Just believe that I know the WHOLE story. Just believe that my plan is perfect. Just believe that I love you.
That’s all you need.
this is good. real good. god is good in showing us different things that we sometimes miss in such a ‘common’ story. just believe. it’s so easy, yet so so so so hard. but we make it hard. there are things i struggle with too but i just have to trust. easier said than done, just like the believing. and so exhausting at times when you have that battle going on in your head. sometimes i just have to stop and pray outloud, tears streaming down my face. it’s that verbal confession, that i need him, that gets me back on track.
love you girl. love your honesty!
Love you too, Annie! And I agree. Sometimes we just have to be honest about where we really are!
oh, how i love your blog…your honesty…your transparency. i think sometimes as believers, we have a hard time admitting out loud that we are angry and/or bitter at our creator, but sometimes that is the reality. it’s not like he doesn’t already know that we are thinking and feeling that way. 🙂 sometimes we just need to verbalize it and acknowledge it so we can let him do something about it…and heal our heart. during my first…and second miscarriages, i laid face down on the floor, sobbing my heart out, begging and pleading with god to save my babies. And, in the end, he didn’t. i was bitter and angry for a very long time. I knew in my mind, “he works all things together for good”, but my heart had a hard time believing that. recently, my grandmother was diagnosed with cancer. we watched her struggle and suffer for so very long. our prayers changed from “please heal her” to “please god, end her suffering and take her home”. she continued to suffer, struggle and decline for a year before she was called home. that was over a year ago. i still struggle with why she had to suffer so much and so long. i still have issues with trust and faith, but we are working on that. 🙂 day by day, my friend! will be praying for you! 🙂
Rachel, Yes. I’ve been there. Face to the floor. I’m sorry you’ve faced these struggles. It’s so hard. But you hit it on the head… day by day!!
Love you and I love your faith! You encourage me, friend.
Love you too, JoJo! I keep thinking “God is God. And that’s enough.” 🙂
Thank you for this post. A little 7 yr old drowned 2 wks ago and a friend just passed away from pancreatic cancer leaving behind a 12 yr old who lost his dad 7 yrs ago & his only brother 2 yrs ago so my heart has been heavy like yours. I appreciate you writing this. It’s a good reminder to BELIEVE and I will certainly lift you up in prayer as well. Thanks again!
Candice, That’s awful. Man, sometimes it’s so hard to understand what God is doing…
You look pensive in the photograph, Lyndsay. You’re not good at hiding your sadness, sweet girl. I continue to hold you up in prayer because you are important to me.
Thank you Ginger!
I have been through a very similar situation with our precious friends. We prayed, BELIEVING!, claiming scripture and fully believing that God would heal him…within 5 months he was gone, his precious wife and 4 children left to go on without him. The struggles, faith/doubt is all so surreal. In my head AND heart I knew better. The pain just overwhelmed me. When I was almost 21 I lost my husband of just 22 months. Your precious grandpa met me at my parents’ house and told me that God was not intimidated by the grief process that I would go through. God could handle all the “why’s” I would have. Just rest in Him Vicki, and know that whichever of us gets to heaven first can ask the Lord these questions. Dr. Lindsay got that understanding first but I know that from my history with the Lord, HE IS FAITHFUL! Even when I don’t understand! Even when people say really hurtful things and quote scripture that doesn’t fit or help our hearts at all. What a great passage of scripture to rest in. Just believe. I am praying for you Lyndsay! May God give you the breath to breathe right as you need it, bear your pain at just the right point, and comfort and strengthen your heart for HIS glory. Until we see him face to face, Just believe.
Vicki, WOW! I can’t even imagine what you went through. It’s so true though that God can handle every emotion we experience. He’s big enough! Thank you for sharing that with me. 🙂
Thank you so much for this post. It has been a rough year, as well, for us and I also felt like I had been punched in the gut when God called such a wonderful man home. I did not know him as well as you, but his personality was infectious and my Katie was so excited about moving to the middle school group. I have been very “half-hearted” in my faith over the past couple of months; thank you so much for the reminder that our God is in control and knows how the story will unfold and end. Beautifully put! 🙂
Hey Missy! Punched in the gut is a great way to express the last month. Ugh!
Lindsay, that is such a precious reminder of what is most important. Just believe. Thanks you for sharing this. Love you.
Punk,you are learning some tough, but good, lessons very early in life. I wish there were easier ways for us to learn what it means to know abandonment to the perfect plan of God. It seems that we only learn this through times of absolute desperation. David expressed the same things you(and I)feel in many of the Psalms (the whys, the anger,the bitterness,the frustrations of not understanding, etc.) and God described him as “a man with His heart.” He is giving you His heart – making you just like Him. I am soooo proud of you and I love you!
I love you Daddy! I’ve been thinking a lot about David too. If anyone was a hot mess, it was him!
I lost my husband of 7 years while I was pregnant almost 2 years ago now. I have been yelling at God a lot lately. I don’t know what the plan is but I find myself fighting to hold on to my faith. I hope I can learn to rest and just believe. Glad to know others fight the same struggle against disbelief. Lord, help me in my unbelief.
Abigail, I’m so sorry. That’s something that I just can’t even imagine going though. When I read this I prayed for you. He’s big enough. And I think he wants us to be honest with him! He can handle it. Don’t give up on your faith!!
God is so wonderfully gentle with us. I love that He brought that passage to life for you in such a personal timely way. Thanks for sharing. p.s. Your blog and family are beautiful!
Courtney, Yes He is! Thank you. :))
“Just believe that I know what’s about to happen. Just believe that I know the WHOLE story. Just believe that my plan is perfect. Just believe that I love you. Just believe.”
I wrote this the chalkboard in my dining room. I needed it. Sometimes I get angry whabout being 29 and single or having a job I don’t really like and no forseeable way out. I needed every word of this. Thanks for sharing. I’m really glad God connected us.
Me too, Jen. And I believe He has BIG plans for your life!!!
it’s difficult to be spiritually in tune ALL the time. we all stray, doubt, question. it is natural. such a good thought to just believe- to step out in faith when we cant understand or are having a hard time feeling connected. i walk through these valleys sometimes, too. you are strong, it comes through in your writing.
and you don’t have to look so dang adorable all the time! give the rest of us a chance 🙂
Sweet, sweet Lyndsay, I have just today found your blog and it is so touching! You are a gifted writer! Keep writing and always remember James 4:8 ” Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.” There is nothing like going through life especially the hard stuff with The Lord right by your side! His peace covers you like the softest, warmest blanket you could imagine and to experience Him speaking to you through His Word directly after asking something of Him is an experience like no other. I never cease to be amazed at how much my Lord cares for me and hears me when I cry out to Him! I pray for you going through a brain tumor. I know some of what you are going through having been diagnosed with a pituitary tumor when I was in college and Multiple Sclerosis when my boys were just 3 and 4. I believe God healed me of the tumor but He chose not to heal my MS. I thank Him for it all because it helps me understand whole heartedly with those like you who are going through so many unanswered questions. Also if I hadn’t gone through what I have I would never know my Lord in the intimate way I do today and THAT I wouldn’t trade for anything in the world. Keep calling out to Him; you will grow nearer and stronger every time you do. I always knew there was something extra special about you since the day we met. You are so real and a true diamond in the rough. Although the chiseling may hurt with every chip that falls your light shines brighter for all to admire! Keep believing! Love you!
Lindsay, God leads me to your blog about once a week and pours blessing on me through you. I have MS and it seems like such a struggle each day but I am reminded through your blog about how blessed I am. In my prayers I ask that I can be so thankful for the things I can do and not concentrate on the things I can not do! God will provide! Thanks again for God’s words I hear through you!!