Last summer my biggest concern had to do with getting to the pool to wear my kids out and maintaining my tan. I said I desired to bring glory to the Lord and I prayed for more faith. I studied my Bible and enjoyed my quiet times. I knew He was faithful to keep His promises, but I can’t say that my outward life showed that I really trusted Him in all things. I was very comfortable enjoying the earthly blessings that He’d bestowed upon me.
One evening in early August my husband and I had just sat down to enjoy a show on the television and I got a phone call from a former coworker of my Dad’s that they were taking him to the Emergency Room. My parents were divorced and my only brother lived out of state, so I immediately made the drive downtown to see what mess he’d gotten himself into. He was always putting others before himself, so I just assumed that the Lord was telling him to slow down and take care of himself. I had no idea that my Daddy would be welcomed into Jesus’ arms in heaven less than two hours later.
Daddy’s death was traumatic and to say that I was in shock would be an understatement. I was now the executrix to my Daddy’s estate at the age of 32, the person responsible for cleaning out the sizable home of a “saver”, a working mom of two young kids, a wife, and a Daddy’s girl without her Daddy. My desire for a day at the pool became a desire for a day without tears. It would have been an easy time to get angry at God, but instead through my shock, the Spirit began to soften my heart to more of the Lord than I’d ever seen.
“The Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans.” -Romans 8:26
Without my asking, He provided life-giving Scriptures exactly when we needed them. He gave us friends and family to love on us. He had placed us in a church that carried us when we couldn’t even walk. He arranged the jobs we needed to be able to take time off to begin to recover. He even provided the clothes to wear to the funeral; Daddy had taken me shopping for my birthday the week before and bought me a beautiful dress. Every time that I had asked the Lord for more faith, He answered through each little provision during this time.
Throughout this year the Lord has gently shown me how I had kept my Daddy, along with some other things, on a throne in my life that only belongs to Jesus Christ. I have felt the loss of my Daddy greatly and long for the day when my tears will be wiped away. But God is so good; He has filled the hole left by losing my earthly Daddy to overflowing with my Heavenly Father. So now, almost exactly a year later, my family is in the process of selling our home of almost 10 years to move out to my Daddy’s old home. The Lord is calling us to create a place to love on others and point them to their Heavenly Father that dearly loves them and so much wants to increase their faith also.
Sisters, He longs for you to ask Him to increase your faith. It may seem like a dangerous prayer here on earth, but I can promise you that walking closer with Him is worth the sacrifice. His presence is one of the greatest gifts we can receive this side of heaven, and there’s no way I could’ve truthfully and honestly said that without the journey of this past year. I’d like to leave you with the Scripture that the Lord gave my brother and me when Daddy passed–just a bit of His perfect presence as you go about your day:
“Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. I say to myself, “The Lord is my portion; therefore I will wait for him.”- Lamentations 3:22-24
– Alison Johnson