REFLECTIONS: Being thankful and trusting Creator
I’ve been overwhelmed, thankful and encouraged by the calls, cards and emails I’ve received from you, my readers, after I told you I was having back surgery. Doctors told me that this surgery had the potential to cause a lot of initial pain and the doctor even told my family after surgery that, because of the extensive work that was done, I would have significant pain. However, I have not because God answered your prayers in the affirmative! One doctor even called me one of the “blessed” ones who has had minimal pain. Yes, I’ve had some aching as a result of the bones that were moved and the foot long incision in my back and there are occasional nights that I don’t sleep very well. However, my pain is minimal compared to how much I had before surgery and I am so grateful that I can now walk without pain. Again, thank you for your prayers.
Earlier, I said that God answered your prayers in the affirmative. God always answers our prayers. Sometimes he says yes, sometimes he says no and sometimes he says we are to wait because He has a different plan for a different time and in a different way. Therein lies our need to trust God’s character to choose what is best for us. This is what the Bible says and what Jesus demonstrated while on earth.
Jesus was not an unfeeling robot but he had emotions. Jesus said, “I am gentle and lowly in heart,” (Matthew 11:29b NIV). He wept at the tomb of Lazarus. He had compassion and fed those who were hungry. Our Jesus touched the untouchable leper, cast demons out of people everyone else was afraid of and approached and spoke tenderly to those who were considered outcasts. He spoke significant, life changing messages into the lives of the marginalized of society. In addition: “When he went ashore he saw a great crowd, and he had compassion on them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd,” (Mark 6:34a ESV). “And when the Lord saw her (a widow who was burying her only son), he had compassion on her and said to her, ‘Do not weep,'” (Luke 7:13 ESV). After that comment, Jesus raised her son from the dead. With a heart like His that teaches, heals and encourages, why would we think He doesn’t care enough to do what is best for us; even if it is not exactly what we want. Would I be as thankful if I had been having all the pain that the doctors expected? I pray that I would because I want to trust God and ask Him what He wants me to learn in spite of the adversity.
A friend of mine has a very ill son for whom they are praying for healing whether it be by God’s miraculous hand or through medical treatments that God has given man the ability to discover. Yet, he recently wrote this, which I feel pinpoints what I’m trying to say: “Our faith has to be firmly placed in the One who is faithful! So often our hope is in the healing or the outcome. My prayer is that our hope would be in the God of that outcome! “
May that be our focus and desire as we pray for answers to our needs! Whether God answers our prayers with a yes, no or wait, may we all grow to learn through and be thankful for all of His answers!
Helen McCormack’s book, “Ordinary Life, Extraordinary God” which contains about 1/3 of the devotionals written for the Minot Daily News for nearly 25 years is available online or by contacting her at email@example.com.