I recently picked up a devotional book that I hadn’t looked at for about six months while I was using other devotionals. Sometimes I get frustrated with myself for jumping back and forth between devotions without finishing a book. However, I am coming to realize that God uses those changes to speak to me. I began reading one of the devotions and it really struck me, then glanced at the next one and realized that it was an almost seamless continuation of the first one I read.
These devotions were written by Kathy Ferguson Litton who became a widow at the age of 45. A friend told her “that because of my husband’s death my life would take an entirely new trajectory. She said I would ‘begin to go places I would have never gone before, meet people I would have never known before, and understand things I would have never known before.’” WOW – that has certainly been true for me. When I think of all the new and precious friendships that God has brought into my life since and because of Scott’s death I am in awe of God providing encouragement and friendship when I needed it most. I think of the many opportunities to share my story and my faith, opportunities to connect with people who are suffering, and opportunities to be a blessing to others.
It is so easy to think that with a loss of our magnitude that life is over, that the best is behind me, and that my life will always be clouded because of Scott’s death. I am coming to realize that although I will always miss Scott and grieve his loss, God’s plans for my life did not end with his death and do not diminish Scott’s life and our love. Where my God-directed trajectory will take me, I don’t know, but I do know that God’s plans are to prosper me and not to harm me, plans to give me a hope and a future. (Jeremiah 29:11)
“Knowing and receiving God’s comfort comes with a price. The price is pouring that comfort out on others. It is a calling, an obligation, a privilege, and a divine purpose in suffering. . . The ‘why’ question was asked concerning the man born blind in John 9. Jesus never seemed to give a satisfying answer to that inquiry but He did give his disciples the answer to the ‘to what end?’ question with this phrase: ‘that the works of God should be revealed in him.’ (John 9:3 NKJV) One of the ‘works of God’ is a tried, undisputable faith in the midst of struggle. What is a tried faith? It is confidence in the goodness of God in the midst of circumstances that scream otherwise.”
Whatever my questions and grief over Scott’s death, I have never lost sight of or my confidence in the goodness of God. My faith has been tried and is firm. It is not something that can be easily explained given our circumstances nor is it my own strength. Yet, I have seen His hand of provision and care. He has taken care of EVERY need, including comfort and peace. This is certainly not to say that I have not had moments of humanness, down moments, or sad moments, but when I keep my eyes on Him, He provides just what I need in that moment to keep moving forward.
“God requires belief and trust in moments of human weakness, but faith is what makes us strong. Faith is the state of being convinced about what we hope for.” -- www.Acts17-11.com
“Dear Father, on my trajectory of pain strengthen my faith so even a doubter can see Your reality in my life. Amen. “
Italics are excerpts from A Daily Women’s Devotional – pgs 96 & 97, daily devotionals written by Kathy Ferguson Litton