Larry and I have built our lives around this verse. I prayed to God just before I met Larry and told Him I would wait for the man He wanted me to be with, that I was tired of picking out the men I thought I should date. Then I met Larry and I knew. We were married 4 months when we decided to stop using birth control. We were not actively trying to get pregnant, but we wanted God's plan for our family, not our own plan. That same month we began a Dave Ramsey course and handed our finances to God.
We gave him everything.
Last year we both experienced a change of heart. We both knew I needed to be home more after Katie's birth. We both knew we needed to homeschool. We did not know why to either of these callings, but we listened.
I was scared. I knew that these changes meant we would both be home a lot and I didn't know why. I told Larry while I was pregnant that I thought something was wrong with Katie. I told him it would be ok, but I believed that God wanted me home more for a reason, and it would make sense if Katie had health problems that I would need to attend to. I was ready. I was prepared mentally.
Then Katie was born and she was perfect. I couldn't believe it. I decided God must have just wanted to bless us with this time together.
I was wrong.
I had no idea we would need to travel more as a family. I had no idea I would need days where I could work from home, away from the questions and chatter of people around me.
The last few days I have avoided my favorite bible verse. When I see it, my stomach turns and all I can think is, You lied to us. You made a promise and you broke it.
I feel like our large extended family is hurting right now. Hurting because of choices God made. He specifically said he would not harm us and yet, I feel very harmed.
The only comfort I can cling to is knowing that this is all part of a plan. A plan that I do not understand yet. God prepared my family for these times. He prepared my mother-in-law. There are too many things that have happened that all make sense now that Loraine has passed away. I have always said, "God's plan is bigger and better than my own." Right now, I don't believe that. But I keep hearing in my head, Trust me. Trust me.
It's times like these when people often turn from God. They decide that so many bad things have happened, that God must not be real. There are two types of bad things. There's evil, in which case we shouldn't blame God but instead, lean into him for healing; and there's death before we are ready. The second type is what we are dealing with now. When you think about it, we are angry with God for calling people home to Him. They are all so much better off now. But it's hard to see that through our own hurt and grief.
I'm angry right now and I'm going to allow myself to be angry. When our children are angry we are sure to tell them, "It's ok to be angry. You're allowed to be angry. But you can't hit people when you are angry." I'm going to tell myself that today. I'm allowed to be angry, but I can't turn my back on God as a result. It may be a few days or weeks before Jeremiah 29:11 sits well with me again. In the meantime, I will lean on different verses, like this one: Trust in him at all times, O people; pour out your heart before him; God is a refuge for us. Psalm 62:8. This comforts me because I know God will continue to love me through my anger. I know, as I pour out my heart to him, he will console me. He will be my refuge.