Most Wednesdays my mom and Michael take our two-year-old daughter, Eden, to the park. This past week my mom asked, “Edie, do you want to go to the park today?”
“Maybe…it’s possible…if Daddy’s feeling better…” her tiny voice answered.
We should have that line engraved on a plaque and embroidered on a pillow—it’s the way we live our lives. So much hangs in the balance, waiting on Michael’s chronic illness to tell us what we can and can’t do each day. Even at two years old, her little mind has picked up on it.
Will we attend so-and-so’s birthday party?
Can we go out as a family?
Is daddy coming too?
Will we ever have our own home?
Will we get back on our feet financially?
Will he ever pastor again?
if he’s feeling better.
Do you live this way too? Feeling like a fickle and unfettered health condition rules your life? It can be tempting to think you are missing out on what your days were meant to be. Instead you’re spending them in survival mode, always holding things loosely. Why can’t we be in the driver’s seat of our own daily destiny?
Praise God, all is not as it seems.
Proverbs 16:9 says that “a man’s heart plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps.”
So even if chronic illness were not a factor, control over our own lives would be a mere illusion.
God’s sovereignty over all things—even the hard—is a bit of a mystery, but we see Him exercising it for good throughout His Word. It’s difficult for us to understand why God would take our desires to do great things and render us incapable of them for the time being. Michael attended school for years to be a pastor, we’d love to foster or adopt, and we both have a passion for ministry. Why would God see fit to seemingly sideline us in many of these areas?
I don’t have the answer. And chances are, you don’t either. Even so, we don’t have to feel like our lives are laid waste by a cruel and flippant master. We can rest in the sovereignty of a good, loving, and purposeful God. Nothing He does is a waste.
We can say along with Job, whose very livelihood and family were pulled out from under him,
“I know that you can do all things, and no purpose of yours can be thwarted.”
Oh Lord, our times are in Your hands.