When Life Comes Crashing Down

pixabayby Sandy Kirby Quandt

What can we do when life is falling apart around us?

This question, and others, have come up in conversations I’ve had in the past week with three friends. I’m going to call these friends Widow, Caregiver, and Young Wife.

Widow is in her late seventies. Her husband died unexpectedly several months back. pixabay

When I spoke with her, one of the things she said won’t leave my brain.

“I don’t want to do this.”

I don’t want to walk this path alone.

I don’t want to carry on as if everything is okay, because it isn’t.

I don’t want to put on a smile when my heart is torn in two and it will never be right again.

I don’t want to go out with friends because they are all couples and have no idea what I’m going through.

pixabayCaregiver is in her late sixties.

Her husband recently survived a life-threatening car accident. Last week he took his first few steps since the accident with the help of a walker. While she tried to put up a good front, I saw past her facade, because I’ve been where she is.

Although you are grateful for the spared life, your life has changed drastically and there is no way to go back to the way it was before.

As we spoke, she said, “You do understand.”

Yep.

Isn’t that what we want?

Someone who understands. Someone who has walked where we’re walking? Someone who won’t judge when we let the mask slip and show our vulnerability and pain?

Young Wife is in her late twenties. She has two children under the age of six.

She and I pixabaymet five years ago. We’d not seen each other for almost a year.

My heart aches for this Child of God and the difficulties she continues to experience in her marriage.

As we spoke she smiled and said, “We just have to have faith, right?”

So. Back to my original question.

What can we do when life is falling apart around us?

The Bible tells us God is the husband to the widow and father to the fatherless. We are told Jesus is our strength when we are weak. He gives us the power to keep going when we want to give up.

Christ will never leave or forsake us. He’s got our back and holds every tear we have ever cried.

All very very true.

pixabayYet …

He uses people like you and like me to step up and be the hand to hold, the shoulder to lean on, the ear that listens.

Like I’m fond of saying right along with the Apostle Paul, comfort as we’ve been comforted.

Do you find it easy to share your experiences so others may be comforted, or be honest so you can be comforted?

Why or why not?

Leave a comment below to share your thoughts on the subject. If you think others would appreciate reading this, please share it through the social media buttons.

All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is our merciful Father and the source of all comfort. He comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others. When they are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us. 2 Corinthians 1:3-4 (NLT)

I wish you well.

Sandy

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Sunday Scriptures — Be God’s Hands and Feet

Isaiah 40by Sandy Kirby Quandt

When I entered the vet’s office with Bear earlier this month, I saw a former co-worker sitting on one of the benches with tears in her eyes. Not a good sign in a place where you can walk in with a beloved pet, and leave by yourself. Been there too many times.

I walked over to Nicole, gave her a hug and asked what was wrong, pretty much knowing the answer. Her 19-year-old cat.

This is not a post about losing a pet. Nope. This is a post showing one more time how God is Sovereign. He is in control. He puts people in our path whom he wants us to interact with. It’s our choice whether we take him up on it or not.

I made the appointment for Bear’s annual exam the day before. The receptionist picked the time, not me. That day when I saw Nicole was the first time she’d been at my vet’s. She usually went to a different clinic. When I walked in she wasn’t in the exam room yet.

Coincidence? Hardly.

Nicole was called into the exam room as I paid for Bear’s check-up. I didn’t want to leave without knowing what happened to her cat, but also know sometimes it’s better not to have to face others when you are grieving the loss. So I decided to leave, praying for her as I went.

Just as I opened the car door and got Bear inside, Nicole came running out of the clinic. She threw her arms around me and sobbed into my shoulder.

Her cat would be euthanized.

We talked a little bit until she felt more at peace with the very painful decision she had made moments earlier.

As I backed out of the parking lot, Mercy Me blared from my CD player…Greater is the one living inside of me, than he who is living in the world. He’s greater.

God showed up in that veterinarian clinic in a big way. He allowed me to be a part of his plan to comfort a child of his in her great time of distress at the loss of her cat. I’ve been in the same place where Nicole stood that day. Grieving the loss of a dear pet. No. A beloved family member.

Keep your eyes open. You never know how or when God may use you to be his hands and feet. When the opportunity arrives, step up.

I’d love to hear your thoughts on the subject. Leave a comment below. If you think others would appreciate reading this, please share it through the social media buttons.

What a wonderful God we have—he is the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the source of every mercy, and the one who so wonderfully comforts and strengthens us in our hardships and trials. And why does he do this? So that when others are troubled, needing our sympathy and encouragement, we can pass on to them this same help and comfort God has given us. 2 Corinthians 1:3-4 (TLB)

I wish you well.

Sandy

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What’s Your Story?

SCC ConcertPilot and I recently attended the Steven Curtis Chapman concert, The Glorious Unfolding. Laura Story and Jason Gray were also on stage. If you have an opportunity to see this concert, I strongly suggest you go. Here’s Steven’s website link, with all the upcoming dates and venues.

Jason GrayDuring the concert Jason, Laura, and Steven told some of their story, and how God has worked, and is working, in their lives.

Most importantly, each told how God has taken their broken places, and used them to strengthen their faith, and help them minister to others.

 

Jason mentioned his speech Laura Storyimpediment which causes him to stutter. Laura mentioned her husband’s brain tumor, and how, when he came out of surgery, he knew who she was, but didn’t remember they were married. Steven spoke about the loss of his young daughter, and how he and his wife are advocates for Show Hope. A movement to care for orphans.

Each of us has broken places in our lives. Pain. Sorrow. Suffering. Rejection. No exceptions. The difference is how we handle those hard things life throws at us. God is there to give comfort. All we have to do is reach out to him.

Nothing in our lives is wasted. Even the hard, difficult, why-did-this-have-to-happen-to-me? stuff. If we let him, Jesus can take our brokenness, heal, and restore those broken places, so we are able to use them to comfort someone who may be going through the same things.

So, what’s your story? How are you allowing God to take your brokenness, and use it to comfort others?

What a wonderful God we have—he is the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the source of every mercy, and the one who so wonderfully comforts and strengthens us in our hardships and trials. And why does he do this? So that when others are troubled, needing our sympathy and encouragement, we can pass on to them this same help and comfort God has given us. 2 Corinthians 1:3-4 TLB

I wish you well.

Sandy

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