Motherhood: It Takes Faith

It was a terribly low point in my daughter’s life.  She was struggling to trust that God really knew what was best for her life. After all, what kind of God lets a child’s mother die, leaving her at the mercy of strangers? Strangers who would come to lead her onto a plane away from everything she ever knew, to begin a different life far away?  To be honest, it didn’t make much sense to me either. But here we were in the first months after she came home, staring that new life of hers in the face. A new life in which her body lived in the home of these pale strangers, while her heart longed for her first mom who was now in heaven.

Six months home and it seemed that her misery with this new life would never abate. At one point I grabbed her hands and looked into her eyes. “I know it’s hard to believe that God is good, that He really truly knows what is best for your life. It feels like He gave you bad, not good. I know you will see good someday. But until then, I will believe for both of us, OK?  I will have faith for you, even now when you can’t.”

I’m not sure if my words really lodged in her brain– after all, she was new to English, having spoken another language for nearly a decade before coming to us. But she seemed to calm at my words, at my heart-felt promise that she would have faith again some day, that she would find joy, even though now it seemed her wounded heart would never mend.

As I gripped her hands I remember trying to imagine a life where I truly believed God was cruel, that my fate was in the hands of someone who didn’t care about me. That life looked more barren to me than dead volcanic rock. It tore my heart to think that my child was there, feeling that all was hopeless, that God was not on her side.

And so I spoke hope for her future.  But even as those words fell fierce from my lips, I knew it wasn’t the power of my faith that would save her.  No.  Not my feeble faith.  What had really happened was that peering into that bleakness made me look back again at the God I knew.  The one who loved both me and my daughter with an unendingly wise love. I realized afresh that no matter my frailty, no matter my daughter’s pain, He was up to the task of drawing her back to him. I knew without a doubt that I could trust the God who loved both of us to bring us both out of that place.

And He has.

He has.

I would have despaired unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living.  Wait for the LORD;  Be strong and let your heart take courage; Yes, wait for the LORD.  (Ps 27:13-14)

~~~

Has mothering impacted your faith journey? I’d love to hear about it. If you’re interested in reading more on this topic, please visit the lovely ladies below who also wrote today about faith and motherhood.

{ 12 Comments }

  1. Wow, that was powerful. It brought tears to my eyes. I struggle sometimes with a painful childhood, with so many people’s painful childhoods. But I have faith. His understanding, not mine. His ways, not mine.

  2. A very touching post. Thanks!

    I’m about to become a grandma for the first time. I’d say that takes faith too.

    Blessings,

    e-Mom @ Susannah’s {Kitchen}

  3. Does Melody’s story count? Its not about helping a child live in faith, just die in it.

    • How could her story NOT count? Both shepherding her towards heaven, and finding the faith to trust that your child going to heaven before you WAS actually somehow, incomprehensibly God’s best plan for your life…
      Times like that are all about faith, and about God holding us up when our faith is gone…

      Your life has been an encouragement to me.

      • And then there are the aspects of both helping the other kids with their loss of a sibling, their thoughts of death, and making sure our grieving for her doesn’t make them feel less valued. I can definitely tell, though, that they are sure of things in ways they wouldn’t be if they hadn’t had to wrestle with these things.

  4. Oh, Mary. This just breaks my heart. I just want to fix it. To DO something to make pain like that go away. To feel such darkness is so far removed from my reality and my lungs feel squeezed to death just thinking that so many are going through it right now. I really can’t DO anything. But I’m going to pray until that changes.

  5. This really resonating with me. I’ve had similar conversations with Beza. She seems to expect the bad, expect the “no”, expect the disappointment and it’s frustrating for everyone. I have to stop myself and remember that for a child of 10 she HAS had a lot of “the bad” happen to her. We’re working hard to focus on the good, to cultivate gratitude and remember that God wants good for her. Thanks for this reminder!

  6. Ah Mary …. so great to see this testimony here. I remember chatting about this at the T4A in Austin last year. SO thankful for God’s grace in bringing her to a family where it is safe to grieve … safe to be real … safe to learn to live again. Never is that scenario perfect, my friend, as you well know. He doesn’t ask it to be. LOVE how God is growing your heart through this journey as well. Thanks for sharing!

  7. What I wish right now, as I struggle to connect with and love my newest child, that someone would come along and take my hands and assure me that God has His hand on us and that it will all be OK. That I won’t always feel like a failure as a mother because he and I are always at logger-heads and that one day we’ll love each other more than breath itself. Having faith for that right now is hard for me to come by though I keep praying and asking the Lord for it.

  8. Hi Kimberlie,
    I so much understand the struggle you are going through. I would encourage you to just keep plugging away, be as faithful as you can, trusting God for the outcome. There aren’t any guarantees, of course. But if you just keep doing what you were called to do, you can trust the work He will do in your heart and in your child’s heart. Whether or not it ends up exactly how you imagined, God is good, all the time, and He has you in the palm of his hand.

  9. I had a hard childhood but over came it with faith. I raise my sons to believe anything is possible with gods guidance. What an awesome story and thanks for sharing.

Trackbacks

  1. [...] Owlhaven: Adopting older children with difficult pasts [...]