comfort in times of tragedy.

Doesn’t it always seem like when it rains, it pours? Like, one minute there is nothing really going on in your life and then all of a sudden you feel like every five minutes your being told something awful. It’s interesting, because I feel like the Lord uses those times to teach us trust, patience, and ultimately to grow in Him. I wouldn’t say that things in my life have gone terribly wrong, but I do feel like my prayer list has doubled in the past week. So much has been placed on my heart lately and most of it involves tragic situations – at least through my eyes.

A couple of weeks ago one of my best friend’s mother-in-law was in a horrific bicycle accident. She wasn’t wearing a helmet (which is unusual for her) and she must have lost balanced and flipped over the handlebars. Her name is Diane and she is one of the sweetest, most compassionate, most Godly woman I have ever had the privilege of meeting. Anytime I am around her I can see the light of Christ in her. She is so giving and encouraging and loving. I can only imagine what her family is feeling right now.

She is still in the hospital, but improving on a daily basis. We constantly get prayer updates from her husband, Tom, and it’s encouraging to see her improvement over the last few days. It is going to be a long journey ahead for her and her family. I feel that the Lord has given them peace and comfort at this time and that is also encouraging to see. They are such a faithful family and I am certain the Lord is going to provide for them and take care of the situation. We serve an unfailing God and his plan is perfect!

But as I said, I have a lengthy list of prayers right now. One of which includes my in-laws. My husband’s 97 year-old grandmother (grandmom as we called her) passed away two nights ago. The funeral is this Friday. Grandmom was such a great woman. She was always so kind to me and always remembered exactly what was going on in our lives. It was amazing to see how sharp her mind still was in her 90’s.

Another sweet thing about her is that she gave my husband her wedding rings a few years ago when he was ready to propose. We were not able to use the exact ring, since her fingers were swollen at the time and they had to cut the band, but we were able to use the main stone from it. I absolutely adore my ring. I am so thankful for her generosity in giving those to us. They mean so much to me and I am looking forward to the day (Lord willing) when I can pass it along to either my children or grandchildren.

I know that grandmom is in a better place now, because she was an extremely faithful Christian and devout Catholic. I have been through losing a grandparent and I know that it’s not easy, but we are very thankful that God blessed her with a long, healthy life. We will all miss her.

My husband and I lead the youth group at our church. We have an amazing group of kids and we love them and their hearts. One of the guys from the group, lost his mother to cancer a few days ago. I’m sure it’s been tough for him; I can’t imagine losing my mother, especially as a high schooler. I pray that this tragedy would strengthen him in his faith in Jesus Christ and that he would grow closer to him at this time. The funeral is this weekend and we would have loved to be there to support this young man, but unfortunately we’ll be out of town for grandmom’s funeral. He’s a great kid and always makes us laugh. I hope that he’ll find peace and comfort in the Lord.

Death is hard to deal with. Suffering is hard to deal with. And I’ll admit, trusting in the Lord can be hard as well. But prayer is the most valuable thing we can do in times of hardship and tragedy. Prayer isn’t ‘worrying before God’. Prayer puts worry to rest (Philippians 4:6,7)! Faith-filled prayer is steady and rock solid and knows what it is praying about.

Thank you for taking the time to read all of this.

I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.” -John 16:33

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