This is a guest post I originally wrote for another blog a little over a week ago. I am reposting it here because it is near and dear to my heart. A special thanks to the dear friend who texted me the verse that I have been clinging to ever since.
The sun was going down outside the picture window as the staff laid the facts before me. Like a snowball, they gathered and accumulated . . . access to his body had been compromised, the chemo—the chemo known for destroying muscle and tissue—most likely went where it shouldn’t, painful IVs must be placed, he would most likely need surgery in the morning to replace the lost access. . . . And all the while, my baby, mere hours out of a different surgery room, weeps in frustration and pain on the hospital bed.
My mind screams . . . no, not even a scream . . . a frustrated whisper that causes my heart to race and my eyes to well up as I think it over and over again . . . “Please God, no more . . . no more.”
I send a quick message to some friends asking for prayer and sit down to think. I know God is good. I know His plans are for His glory and my good. I know He will be faithful to Himself through me, but in this moment, my circumstances have a terrible, choking hold on what I know to be true. What do I do? I feel too weary to pray more than a simple, selfish plea to make it stop. “No more . . .”
My phone sounded and I look at the simple message . . .
The eternal God is your dwelling place, and underneath are the everlasting arms . . .
Arms that last forever? That bear every burden? That don’t stop?
How low soever the people of God are at any time brought, everlasting arms are underneath them to keep the spirit from sinking, from fainting, and the faith from failing, even when they are pressed above measure. The everlasting covenant, and the everlasting consolations that flow from it, are indeed everlasting arms, with which believers have been wonderfully sustained, and kept cheerful in the worst of times; divine grace is sufficient for them. (Matthew Henry)
Some months ago, I heard a prayer that I echo often and that catches the essence of my need in this moment: “Don’t give me a better circumstance, but rather, give me a more clear view of you in my circumstance.”
In truth, my circumstances have changed very little since that last sunset when I first read the verse. As I write this, I’m still by a hospital bed, the newest complications of a wretched disease in a broken body still exist, and there was even another surgery this afternoon. But His sufficient grace is here too and the choke-hold relaxes. Sufficient: enough, adequate. The need is met in His moment—not mine—in His perfect way. Whatever “more” I’m begging to be saved from; I need not. I can even be cheerful! Though physically in a hospital room, I live with the eternal God, the everlasting arms are under me and they will not fail.
Moment by moment.