Richards Column: Trusting God No Matter What
Those who regularly read my columns know I sometimes share devotionals written by my friend Larry Davies. This week I’m passing along one he wrote last month. Larry said he has seen many examples of miraculous healing, but more commonly has witnessed times when “a miraculous healing was wished for, prayed for, but the answer was not what was hoped for.”
Larry penned the following example he observed firsthand many years ago near Amelia, Virginia. A young man barely 30 years old asked to meet with him. His visitor’s first words were, “I’m going to die.” He had been diagnosed with a rare form of cancer and because he had other medical issues was told he would live less than a year.
Larry recalls not knowing what to say. He could think of no words to ease the young man’s devastating and heart-breaking circumstances. While he cried softly Larry sat silently beside him. After a few moments, the young man admitted, “I don’t know if I can face what is going to happen over the next few months. Maybe I should just end it all now!” Larry knew they could talk about how suicide was not the answer, but he sensed that what the man really needed and wanted were answers to how he could face his tragic situation.
What Larry said next relates to everyone who has ever faced a major challenge, “Many of us are left on occasion with broken bodies, broken relationships and broken futures. We pray and pray and nothing changes, but in the struggle God asks us to persevere.”
The struggle of trying to make sense of what makes no sense to us is anything but new. A passage written over 2,500 years ago says, “…If you are walking in darkness, without a ray of light, trust in the LORD and rely on your God.” (Isaiah 50:10, NLT, emphasis added) Almost all of us go through dark periods in our lives when we cannot see a way through. Isaiah’s words remind us that God sees our situation better than we do and knows just what to do.
Larry continued, “Far from giving up, Isaiah is implying this is the very time to persevere, to place our lives totally in the omnipotent hand of God. Persevering through bad times teaches us valuable lessons about ourselves, makes us more like Christ and has a way of healing our soul …” (adapted from Healing Is a Choice, by Stephen Arterburn)
The young man was inspired and put his affairs in order, recovered his courage and learned to trust God more than he ever had. His final months became an incredible testimony of courage and faith.
Trusting God is never easy, but life’s toughest challenges offer us opportunities to grow in faith far more than our easy days. It is then when we learn trusting God, who sees what we cannot, makes perfect sense.