Saying that this has been a hard season for our family would be an understatement. Without all the details, I can share that our family is what going through what feels like what David describes in the Psalms like the valley of the shadow of death.
But even in the midst of the valley, it's been amazing to see how God has chosen to lavishly bless our family.
There has been encouragement. Not a day goes by where I don't receive a text of scripture, a friend calling to check in, or an email or card of support. And the words are not platitudes or Christian clichés. They are life-giving truths that remind me of who I am and who my God is.
There has been gifts. Gifts of time, of food, of childcare, and even finances. The carpool line at school has become a swap meet of food and clean dishes I'm returning. Cookies have been decorated with my children, gift cards have arrived unexpectedly, and multiple mugs of coffee drunk with listening ears across the table.
There has been prayers. There are people praying for us; near and far. Those who know the details and those who just know things have been rough. Those who have walked life with us for years and new friends dearer than some blood-family now. They have interceded for me when I have no words or strength left to pray.
Even with all of this, there is a reality that no amount of casseroles or play dates or even prayers on our behalf can truly take away the suffering. At night, when the house is quiet, and I'm left crying out to Jesus, there is still heartbreak. But the comfort of the gospel, the good news that God offers refuge and ultimate salvation, is truly enough.
It has been enough that Jesus is my treasure.
It has been enough that He is my rock, my refuge, and my salvation.
And because of all of this, there has been hope.
Because God is a good Father who loves to lavish his children with undeserved gifts, I can have joy in the midst of sorrow. I can have peace in the midst of heartbreak. I can have hope in the midst of chaos.
But for me it is good to be near God;
I have made the Lord God my refuge,
that I may tell of all your works