By Polly Murphy
I remember it like it was yesterday. I ran to the closet to hide. I stood in the corner behind the clothes, slid to the floor and the tears came like a flood. In the closet I didn’t have to be strong for anyone or answer any questions. Instead, I could ask the questions: “How did this happen? BOTH of them? HOW??? Who am I supposed to call when I need advice? Who is gonna pray for me now? How is this part of my story? HOW???” Our last conversations ran through my mind and I realized that was it. No more hugs, no more calls, they were gone. Both my parents were gone.
My mom was my rock, my hero. She always knew what to say, what to pray and what to do, no matter what was happening. My dad was my security blanket. He was my protector. He was handsome and smart and could fix anything. I immediately felt lost without them. The devil, being true to his nature, didn’t hesitate in showing up while I was at my weakest point. Because his goal is to destroy, he immediately bombarded me with awful thoughts and piercing lies. What he didn’t realize was that God already had a plan in place to redeem me and put me on a path that I wouldn’t have found without this happening.
A PROMISE OF RESILIENCE
God is always one step ahead, ready not just to deliver us but to restore us, and give us beauty to replace the ashes that we so fiercely protect. But there’s a catch. His plan always includes instruction, responsibility on our part. His Word is chock full of promises but if we don’t believe and act on them, they will pass us right on by.
It’s God’s desire to birth miracles from tragic things and He’s more than capable of delivering. But again, we have to do our part. The key to this is trusting Him enough to release the ashes, and to let Him reach into the deepest, darkest parts of our hearts so that He can heal our wounds and breathe new life into us.
Just three days after my parents passed away and knowing my questioning heart, God came and spoke to me. He told me that if I would trust Him, one day I would see why He allowed my family to suffer such loss. Loud and clear I heard Him say, “This will have an impact on people that you can’t comprehend right now. The awful, terrible and unthinkable will be turned around for your good and for My glory.”
I released my ashes and agreed. Was I afraid? YES! But He gave me faith to believe what He said. That moment changed the course of my life forever. I was on a mission! I had to find out what He meant and felt a sense of responsibility to walk it out. I thought, if He trusts me enough to offer something that wouldn’t just impact me and my family but others too, how could I not try?
A PROMISE OF HOPE
I dove in headfirst. Time spent in the Word and in worship became my lifeline. One of the first scripture promises I found was Isaiah 26:3. It’s a tall order, but I’ve come to realize that God loves to do what we think is impossible. It says, “You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you”(NLT). Perfect peace??? Yes, please! I tested it and I’m here to tell you that it is 100 percent true.
It’s been six years since I lost my parents. The thing that the enemy thought would destroy me, brought me to life spiritually. It planted in me a dream for ministry. A dream that brought me here, sharing my story with you. I know it’s hard to see past the pain, to believe that there’s a miracle buried under the rubble of your heartbreak, but I’m here to tell you that there is. We find in 1 Peter 1:3, that Jesus is our living hope. This means it is living, not dead, has life and is currently active and that our hope is a strong and confident expectation. It also says in Matthew 11:28 (NIV): “Come to Me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”
Jesus is our living hope and He wants to take our heavy burdens. He wants to carry us until we can stand on our own and He wants to give us rest. So no matter what you’re going through, God is the answer. His word has the power to transform you, from heart to word to action. He sees your pain and He has a plan to redeem and restore you. It takes time and a lot of trust but it’s so worth it!
Will you trust Him? Will you give Him the chance to show you the story He’s written for you? Sweet sister, my prayer is that you will. Let’s pray:
Lord Jesus, thank You for taking the pressure off of us, for taking our heavy load so that we can rest. You are our living hope and by Your power we will dream again, and see beyond our circumstances to the land of the living. We will take a deep breath, give it all to You and trust You. Thank You for Your friendship and for Your perfect love. It’s our prayer that at the end of this suffering, Your light will shine bright through us onto others. In Your precious name we pray, Amen.