Comfort in the Midst of Tragedy
by Maryann Kauffman
When I was asked to do a guest post on this blog, initially, I wanted to just say no. I don't feel like I'm a natural blogger, or great at putting things into words like many bloggers I know. However, I felt God nudging me and saying, "Maryann, This has nothing to do with your abilities. Don't you have anything to share about what I'VE done for you?" So here's my attempt at putting a small part of that into words.
When I was twenty years old, my husband of fifteen months was shot in the head when he arrived home to find some men robbing our little country home. I was just down the road where he had left me with a sweet kiss and instructed, "Stay here. I'll be right back." He went back to check out the suspicious vehicle close to our house and to offer assistance if needed.
I was close enough to hear the gunshots and to hear the car of the shooter squealing away. I saw it zoom right past the house where I was waiting. I was alone. I was terrified. I found myself running as fast as I could down the road towards our house, carrying our precious son in my seven month pregnant belly. I wasn't thinking about what I might find. I just knew I had to find my husband. My love.
I had my mom on the phone and she begged me not to go to the house, but instead just stop and hide behind a hay bale in the field next to our house while I waited for Marcus' parents to arrive. Behind that bale, I was losing it. I felt as if I couldn't breathe. My chest was so tight and my body was shaking uncontrollably.
I started having contractions and I felt as if I was losing control physically and mentally. God met me there. No, the fear wasn't suddenly gone. I didn't suddenly pull it together and stop crying. But in my desperation, I cried out to the only One who could possibly help me. And He answered.
In those moments, I felt Him closer than I ever had before in my life. Through that pain, I got to know a new side of God. I knew Him as God as my Comforter. Obviously, I was still going through pain and trauma, but He was walking right beside me through all of it. He whispered peace to the turmoil in my broken heart.
He continued to do so, all through the next eighteen days of ups and downs at the hospital, until the day Marcus went to meet his dear Savior. It was by far the most painful thing I've ever experienced to lose the man I loved. My best friend. Yet, I felt the most beautiful peace as my Heavenly Father lifted my weak, tired body into His strong arms and carried me through the storm. He was, and always is, so faithful.
I have since been remarried to an incredible man who I'm deeply in love with. A man who cares so tenderly for my heart, constantly makes me laugh (which I find to be very important), and loves his children and I so selflessly. I never thought I could ever be this happy again, but God has a way of healing that pain and brokenness more than we could ever hope or imagine. He's a good, GOOD Father even though it's much more than we deserve.
We all face hardship. It's inevitable. But I've learned that there is so much beauty in that place of pain and uncertainty. Because in that place, we are forced to see our utter helplessness. We are forced to look to our Heavenly Father, cry out for help, and cling to Him like never before. When He is all we have, that's where we see that He truly is all we'll ever need. He. Is. Enough.
He sees where you're at. He knows the pain in your heart, what's weighing on you right now. And my friend, He cares! He longs for you to come to Him with your burdens and throw them at His feet.
How amazing is it that the Creator of the universe longs for an intimate relationship with you? That He, in all of His perfect holiness, wants to lavish His love on you? If you're thinking you can't possibly handle this trial, you are right. And that's a good thing. Because when we can't, HE can. His strength is made perfect in our weakness. Surrender and know that He promises to work everything for good for those who love Him. (Romans 8:28)
So even though you can't see what He's doing right now, and it makes absolutely no sense from your human perspective, you can trust Him. You couldn't be in more capable hands than the hands of the One who spoke the world into existence. Rest in Him. It's okay to hurt. It's okay to not understand. It's okay to ask Him why. He's felt pain, and He understands. But even in the questioning, you can know Whose you are, and claim Hisn everlasting, never changing, promises. He will never leave or forsake you. (Deuteronomy 31:6) That's a promise.
God bless each one of you.
Maryann is a 23 year old wife and mother of two. She was born and raised in middle Georgia, and her family is now living there as well. She can be found on Facebook as Mary Ann Kauffman, or on Instagram as maryann_kauffman.
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