Trusting in God’s Provision
Just over two months ago, Caroline and I welcomed our first son into the world. I wish that I could say that day was one of the happiest of my life, but if I’m being honest, it was quite the opposite. Shortly after Graham was born, his doctors discovered that his Pulmonary Artery and Aorta were reversed, and he wasn’t able to deliver oxygen through his body on his own. He was rushed via helicopter to MUSC, where he had a couple of surgeries to fix his heart. The 16 days that we spent with him at MUSC were some of the most difficult days that I’ve been through; but God was so gracious and merciful to us throughout that whole process, and through it Caroline and I learned to trust and lean on Him for provision in a whole new way. I wish that as a Pastor I could tell you that it was easy, since I so often encounter situations where I am helping others to trust in God through their own difficult circumstances; but there were definitely times where we both struggled. It was hard to let go of our own wants and desires and to trust that God really is working all things for the good of those who love Him, and are called according to His purpose, as Romans 8:28 tells us. When the news got out that we were headed to Charleston, and would be down there for a couple of weeks, we had several people go out of their way to pack baskets of supplies for us. In one of those baskets, there was a devotional book with a devotion for each day of the year. Including that book with our basket was probably just a simple thought from someone hoping to encourage and uplift us, and God took that simple act and used that devotional as one of the most memorable items we had with us during our time in Charleston. We would open up that devotional, flip to the day that it was, and it was like God had perfectly written and designed the devotion each day for us. On July 30 th , the day before Graham had an open-hear surgery, we were extremely nervous and anxious. We wanted so badly for Graham to be ok, and for a successful surgery. The devotion for that day was based on 1 Peter 1:21, “Your faith and hope are in God.” Wanting Graham to be healthy and ok is a good desire for us to have, but the Holy Spirit convicted us on that day that our hope was in a healthy baby, and not in God’s provision. God doesn’t promise us that things will go well physically with us. As a matter of fact, Jesus says the opposite in John 16:33 when He says that, “You will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” We are told that we will face difficulties and rough patches, but also that there is joy to be had even in the toughest of times, because He is powerful enough to overcome even the tribulation of death. More than that, those who believe in this, and that His death was the punishment for our sins, also are promised that He will raise us from the dead, overcoming the world as well. When we were confronted with that reality, we realized that God was challenging us to believe in His goodness, and His graciousness, in a way we haven’t had to before. Even if things didn’t go the way we were wanting, it wouldn’t change the fact that God is good, and that He deeply loves us. Because of these things, we trust that He is both willing and able to provide us with a peace that surpasses all understanding, a hope that doesn’t disappoint or fade away as the things of this world do. We were still anxious and nervous the day of Graham’s surgery, but we walked into that day after wrestling with 1 Peter 1:21 with a faith and hope that were rooted in God’s ability to provide in the way He saw best. God’s plan for that day was for Graham’s surgery to go well, and for him to become healthy. While I know that isn’t always the case, I want to share a little bit of our story in the hopes that anyone else faced with the tribulation that Jesus says we face throughout our lives, might take hold of the promises and provision that God freely provides for us.