Monday, March 07, 2011

It Looks Different Today

Did you know that it's possible to trust God and still feel despair? I've always heard that if we are despairing or despondent we are not hoping in God.

For the past year I have felt like we were being held face down on a cold cement floor. Trying to get up, but each time we began to crawl up on to our knees another blow would come, dropping us and pressing us to the floor again. We have felt forgotten of God, alone, and utterly exhausted from the struggle. It was (and sometimes is) the closest thing to hell I have ever experienced.

Many days when I would go to bed at night I would cry to God, "Please don't let me wake up to another day." Sometimes I would beg God to take Calvin and would almost wish to see a still body in the morning. His suffering was more than I could take. I couldn't understand God. I trusted Him but it sure seemed like He wasn't showing up. But He was there.

He was there when my face was pressed to the floor. He was there to keep me from the temptation of taking too many sleeping pills. He was there when we sat day after day after day trying to care for a son writhing and screaming in uncontrollable pain. He was there when grief nearly overtook us.

He was there when life became desperate. This desperation kept us laying face down but pleading upward. Lord, have mercy! Fight this battle for us Lord, our faith is weak. Sustain us, God. Lord Jesus. 

He met us in our desperation with His word. Giving us nuggets of hope. Real pleading grounds. Not just cliches or convenient sayings, but something true, real, everlasting that we could hang our life on. His Spirit comforted us in the darkest hours. He surrounded us with a loving family and church family.

Though I walk in the midst of trouble, thou wilt revive me. Psalm 138:7 

And then  He provided a season of relief for us.This is what refreshment looks like right now for me:

           Waking up in the morning without the pit of dread and despair in my heart.

           Noticing the weather outside the window.

           New babies make me happy instead of sad. 

           Making it through many days without crying. 

           Being with other people and hearing about their life.

           Sleep! Sleep! Sleep! from 12-7 almost every night. 

           Less painful to see boys Calvin's age.

           Energy to read the Bible and pray.  

Calvin getting an EEG...the hat made us giggle.

I'm so thankful for this sweet time.


Kate said...

We are so thankful for it, too! We all knew we couldn't fathom your pain during the past year; but praise God that His mercy and strength are more fathomless than earthly pain. We love you!

trmills said...

My friend, you make me weep with your honesty and your faith and your struggle all tied together. Would that we could carry some of your burden, but thank God that He is there to do just that. I'm praying for you now as Darryl's in Cambodia.

Rachel said...

Kara, thank you so much for sharing your heart. I've been reading your blog since long before Calvin was born and still had no idea of the depth of your grief and struggles. I'm thankful that you are experiencing some relief...long stretches of sleep sure help too!

Anonymous said...

Hallelujah!! God is Good!!

KarenKTeachCamb said...

Once again Kara you have blown me away with your honesty. I praise God that you have known His presence in those dark times. I praise God that He is still holding your family in the palm of His hand. I praise God for the love, love and more love that I see in your family. I pray that you will continue to know His presence and be richly blessed as you, together with Darryl, serve our Lord by serving your precious family. I praise God too for all those little (& big) things that are refreshment to you. I agree with Susanna. God is Good! ALL the time (even when we don't feel like it. Love you all.

Foppe said...

Dear Kara, in response to your question at the beginning of your blog read Psalm 56:3,"What time I am afraid, I will trust in thee." Here we see David not denying his fear but trust God in the midst of it! Wishing you God's nearness at all times. Warmly, Pastor VanderZwaag

Roelie said...

What an absolutely adorable picture of Calvin. I have appreciated reading each one of your entries on your blogspot, but this one especially spoke to me, Kara. "The cold cement floor, temptation of taking too many sleeping pills, uncontrollable pain, desperation, Lord, have mercy! Fight this battle for us..." I first read it last night and this morning when I woke up, the Lord put the words of Prov. 3:5&6 on my mind to share with you. You are a living testimony of the truth of God's Word...through the cement floor and desperation you were feeling, HE didn't let go and somehow kept you trusting HIM to write what you did on March 7, 2011. You are acknowledging HIM and HE is directing your path! Thank you for sharing so straight from your heart! You have encouraged and are encouraging me to remember that God's arm is never shortened nor HIS ear too heavy to hear! Isaiah 59:1