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“And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.” —Romans 8:28 (NLT)
We are all hurt as we journey through this life, but at one time I believed that I was the only one who lost someone very close because of an accident that shouldn’t have happened. I just couldn’t let go of the hurt. I thought, “No real God would do this to me!” I started to rationalize and questioned if there really was a God. It took some time before I even realized my thinking was way off base. I was tired of hurting and knew I needed some help. That is where First Lutheran Church entered into my life.
It took a while, but I finally reached out and told my story to a group of warm and caring friends who helped me to get a grip on my “stinkin’ thinkin’.” I really did need to realize that God knows more than I do. Another friend gave me a book by Henri Nouwen, The Wounded Healer, which described the healing power of a person who knows what it’s like to be hurt, a person who has been wounded. It was an essential step in letting go and turning back to the Word of God. I just needed to place my trust in the greatest healer of all.
Needless to say, more bad things did happen that shouldn’t have, and I lost two more precious loves within months. I handled the losses much differently. I knew from the life of Jesus that God is waiting and wanting to bring good out of the hurt we have experienced. He has a purpose for all of us. I had no doubt these painful accidents would prove to be a blessing. I did not turn my back on God; I turned to him and a fantastic support system.
God was also by my side during a challenging medical problem. I was never afraid. I had made my peace, and he guided the hands of the surgeons through a difficult surgery that left me with a quiet voice, when it was likely I would not speak again. What a blessing I received and continue to receive! God showed me that everyone, especially children, would pay more attention if they wanted to hear what I had to say. All I had to do was get their attention. I also remembered a children’s song, “Trust and Obey,” that is always in the back of my mind: “For there is no other way to be happy in Jesus but to trust and obey.”
All of us have some sort of emotional pain in our lives, but the great thing is that God wants to heal our pain. God is still in charge. It will turn out okay. We have this blessed assurance with the words and promises of God. We must believe in the promise of his grace.
Author and preacher Max Lucado reminds us, “It all works out in the end. If it hasn’t worked out yet, then it’s not the end.”
Thank you, Lord, for helping me to place my trust in you rather than in my emotions and feelings. In Jesus’ name. Amen.