“There may be pain in the night, but joy comes in the morning.” That is a phrase we often hear as struggles are afoot. I have to tell an embarrassing story… the day after Ellie died, my kind neighbor gave me a cd she had burned with one song on it.- “Joy Will Come,” by The Desperation Band. I put it in and listened to the first few sentences before ejecting it. Anger bubbled. I thought, how dare she! To imply this bleeding of my heart would ever turn to something beautiful. I never said anything, but I didn’t pull that cd out again until a good two years later. Two years when I could see beyond the crippling pain, and know there are pieces of good falling together because of our loss. I could finally hear the hope in a song for the broken.
Ever since we went through a grief support group/grief study as a family, we have talked about someday leading one of our own. For the longest time though, the heaviness of my heart kept me from believing that I could minister to anyone else. Now we are stepping out. Our awesome new church is supporting us in getting a Grief Share up and running, and we are thankful, so thankful that He can use our loss to reach out to the hurting.
There is another battle we fight, one that is only shared with our innermost circles. A pain that brings fear, heartbreak, and uncertainty. Right now, I don’t know how to get through the muck, but I know with certainty that one day, when we are emerging on the other side of this storm, there will be a whole new opportunity for me to share with others who are in the thick of it. That’s pretty humbling, to think He can use ME.
The greatness of life is not in avoiding the struggles, but in leaning into them, being changed by them, and then using them to bring hope to crumbled hearts.
God’s plan wasn’t for this world to be broken, but He has been faithful to make beautiful things from our suffering. What will you do with your battle?