When God says, “no”.

This is an old photograph.

Both my parents, my sister and myself are in it along with my niece and nephews.

Looking at it brings a little sting with the joy.

My father has been gone a long time.

My niece and nephews were visiting, the only time their Mom (my half-sister) brought them out.

Their father had died and she was having us all meet.

And she’s been gone many years now also.

Death has never lost a sting of pain.

But it’s never held the poison of hopelessness.

I have a great deal of hope that my father is waiting for me in heaven.

Although I never met my half-sister’s husband and I only met her once I hold on to the same hope for them.

I know my father knew Jesus and I am confident that knowledge is even greater today as he lives with the Lord.

And today I was reminded again of the sweet hope of heaven.

It’s eternal and so many things are not.

Today’s reminder came in the form of a text.

“The baby girl died today.”

My chest tightened and my heart lurched and I almost felt sick to my stomach.

This text was referring to a little baby girl we and others have been praying for.

Her condition had been very bad and the family had asked for prayer months ago.

And we had prayed.

Recently another cry had come to us to pray: she’s not doing well.

We did.

We put her on the prayer chain.

We asked others to pray.

Then yesterday we heard the baby’s infection was gone.

I was so excited as I texted the good news.

I felt so encouraged as I prayed again for her and her family.

Then this afternoon I heard of her death.

God had answered.

It just wasn’t the one I was expecting.

I texted the prayer chain.

I texted our friends.

And one response was the reminder of God’s goodness and faithfulness:

These are the days I realize that the only thing we can really look forward to is eternity. Where there will be no more pain or death. Praise the Lord for salvation and eternal life with Him. Praying for God’s peace and joy for the family as they mourn the loss of their baby girl.

Amen.

Salvation is our comfort.

Heaven is our home.

May God be glorified even in this.

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