August 31, 2011

Joy In Him

“Mom, will you please wait for me?” The questioner was a pretty brown-eyed, brown-haired girl, perhaps 10 years old. “Sure, honey” came her mother’s ready response. The question and answer came from the occupants of the stalls next to me in the washroom at church one Sunday morning. It was a simple question and an innocuous reply, but I found them to be heart stabbing that day. I never know when something is going to strike me just so and cause a rush of pain. Convincing myself that 10 minutes prior to the service starting was no time for a meltdown, I quelled the threatening tears and joined the other ladies at the sinks, to discuss the abnormally frigid April morning and how 10:00 is the perfect time for the Sunday morning church service to start.

That brief mother-daughter conversation stayed with me throughout the day though, and the pain it brought came readily to mind as the Scriptures were opened for our evening service.

The LORD is righteous in all His ways,
Gracious in all His works.
The LORD is near to all who call upon Him,
To all who call upon Him in truth.
He will fulfill the desire of those who fear Him;
He also will hear their cry and save them.
~ Psalm 145:17-19 (NKJV)

Verse 19 especially brought tears to my eyes and a prayer to my heart – “Lord, You know that my desire is to have a child but You have not fulfilled that desire!” Even as the thought went through my mind, I knew the answer, and this was reaffirmed by Pastor Greg during the sermon. God is righteous in all His ways, and for some this means the burden of unanswered prayer. At least, the answer is not what is so fervently prayed for. Yet, the Lord is still righteous, and the path of my life is for my eternal good and His great glory. Verse 17 also says that He is gracious. God is not a miser, He is not a scrooge. He gives grace freely, He loves abundantly, and this is seen most clearly in our suffering and now ascended Saviour.

But what about my unfulfilled desires? Pastor Greg addressed this question directly. God has not intended us to find our fulfillment here on earth. But He does intend to fulfill every desire of His children. At this time, He is purifying, sanctifying, perhaps even purging our desires, and - in the end - we will be satisfied. He gives us Himself, our Saviour Jesus, and in Him we have all fullness. One day, when we are purged from our sin, loosed from the ties of this earth, then Jesus will be enough. In fact, Jesus is more than enough now, but our sin keeps us from seeing that. But then, then we will see and fully know that He is enough and we will rejoice with exceeding joy. So let us now seek to find our satisfaction in Christ, and to revel - yes, revel - in the fullness that is ours through and in Him. That’s where the joy is to be found. Even if God were to answer our prayer for a child, my husband and I could still only find fullness and fulfillment in Him. How great is our God!

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ.
~ Ephesians 1:3 (NKJV)

Karen, a Canadian girl, is a wife, daughter, sister, aunt, friend, and a servant of the King. She and her husband are on the infertility journey, finding peace in the God of Peace. Karen loves cats, dabbles in cooking and gardening, and works at a Christian bookstore.