Darkness. Like nothing I could have ever imagined. It has enshrouded me for months. The barrage of attacks by Satan have been extremely calculated, customized, and brutal. I have questioned everything about who I am and what I am actually doing on this earth. Satan has attacked those closest to me and put them through things that I cannot protect them from. He has then turned to me and brought up mistakes I have made and thrown them in my face. I’m not a person who cries much, but I am certain that I have cried more in the last seven months than I have my entire life. For a long time, all I saw was darkness. For a long time, all that I was experiencing felt completely hopeless.
Today marks thirty days of my sweet baby being seizure-free. December 6th our lives changed forever. We spent most of the next two weeks in and out of hospitals between here and Little Rock having every test imaginable run on our little girl. Eleven IV attempts. Three lumbar punctures (two attempts and one successful). Intubation for an MRI/LP. Two EEGs with one lasting five days. A three day Holter Monitor. The list of invasive things done to our baby girl goes on. This is only one of the many trials.
Things today look so much different than they did a year ago. Things are so much different than what I imagined they would be. The struggles continue and the darkness is so very present….but so is the Light.
God has taught me so much in the last few months. Through this valley, I repeatedly questioned whether He truly lead us to move to Arkansas. Many days my heart ached for North Carolina and our life and community there. Our faith has been tried so much, however I now KNOW we were intended to be here. Our daughter has had prompt and excellent care by an entire team of specialists that would not have been as available had we not moved. We have had the privilege of being immersed in a strong community of Christians and been discipled in a way that we have never experienced. We’ve been able to rely on both of our families in ways that would have been much less possible had we stayed at the beach. So many blessings that I am starting to be able to see as I reflect back. We have been broken, but God remains faithful to provide “our daily bread”.
Bro Gary McHenry recently shared a devotional thought and described how if every light was turned off in the house and you experienced complete darkness, then if someone turned on a flashlight, you would instinctively look to the light and the intense darkness of the room would fade. He shared a quote by Walt Witman: “Keep your face always towards the sunshine and the shadows will fall behind you.”
I don’t know the context of Walt’s quote or his take on God, but I don’t really think it matters. Jesus said in John 8:12,
“I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.”
For now, I’ve learned not to try to plan too far ahead. Some days are just a couple of hours at a time. The point is to focus on the light of Christ. None of this makes sense to the logical part of me. It probably won’t make sense to a lot of people around me. I’m praying for wisdom and for the “peace of God which surpasses all understanding”.
“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things.”Philippians 4:6-8 NKJV
Today, I am am thankful for the last thirty days of no seizures. I am thankful for medication that helps prevent seizures. I am thankful that we live in a place with more than one pharmacy so that when 8 inches of snow knocks the power out of one, we can get refills at another. I am thankful for the beautiful snow and for the health, time, and ability to build a snowman together as a family. I am thankful for sleep-I never truly appreciated it until I didn’t have it. I am thankful for a strong community of family and friends who have stood by our side and reinforced us with so much love, encouragement, and especially prayers and godly counsel.
We are not out of the woods yet and continue to have multiple appointments and setbacks each week. With each challenge, I have to remind myself that my circumstances do not change whether or not God is good-He is and He is working “all things together for good to those who love Him.” (Romans 8:28)
I want to encourage anyone who is going through the thickest of darkness, to keep looking towards the light of Christ. His light brings the peace that surpasses understanding and THAT will guard you heart and mind. Focus on the things that are true, noble, just, pure, lovely, and of good report. (Philippians 4:8)
Focus on Jesus, who is the Light, and the shadows will fall behind you!
We would love to hear your thoughts about this devotional. Did God speak to you or challenge your daily walk with him? Or is there a topic that you would like Kimberly to cover or expound on? Please share with us in the comments below.
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The grace of God will guide us through ever adversity.
He does for sure!
Love your message today and pray your little girl becomes seizure free. Would like how to get a son back in my life. He threw me to the wind because I was helping a girl who had done wrong to me but I am trying to live the way Christ lives, where he forgives. Thanks for your reply.
Prayer is the most powerful tool God gives us. Will be praying for you!