Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Not the only one...

Sometimes it seems, just as soon as I finish writing about my fears - the demons that threaten my faith or the struggles we all sometimes face - that I am once again reminded that I am not the only one. And more often than not - my troubles seem to pale in comparison to another's. I think we can all agree - that in this life we all face difficulty. Sometimes it comes down to matter of perspective and we just need to press on - be thankful for what we have - not worry about what we can't control. But other times - it's heartbreaking...devastating. Sometimes there is nothing fair or doable or understandable about it. But no matter the source or size or severity of our trials - We have to remember we are not alone. We are not alone in our anxieties and troubles. We are not alone in our questions and confusion.
We are not alone in our need for help...for encouragement...for prayers.
And there is a little girl out there right now who needs our prayers.
Her name is Ruby.

She is beautiful. She is adored by her family. She is 7 months old.
And her liver is failing.

My heart sank as I saw her little face pop up on a friend's wall on facebook asking for prayers. I didn't know if my friend knew them personally or not - it didn't matter. When you know someone in need of get the word out there. Oh no. Another poor baby is sick. I almost didn't want to read it. But I had to. And like always - it broke my heart to read her story. I sometimes think " are so very wise. You are all-powerful and full of grace and mercy. I know you are in control. And you accomplish much by sharing these stories with me...but I'm starting to feel like nobody has it easy anymore. Why are all the children sick? Why are all the babies fighting for their lives or taken away too soon?" And I guess that's the point.
Nobody has it easy anymore.
Ruby is not the only sweetie that has been brought into my heart and prayer-list this year...this month...this week. The list grows in number almost every day.
Maybe it was always this way - and my eyes were only opened to it 3 years ago. But I've said it to many of my friends before - it seems that after we experienced our nightmare - I've regularly been introduced to someone else's nightmare. My prayers in are constant rotation with all the names of families and children and babies in need. And it's given me perspective. And it's given me resolve to pray for strangers in a way I never did before. And it's given me compassion, empathy and love for so many I never would have known about. But it's hard to stay positive. It's hard to keep coming up with words to say to these struggling families.
It's hard to keep looking into the eyes of these innocent children - picturing my own - and reading in amazement what they and their families are going through (always with God at the forefront I must say...and I don't think that is coincidence) and not feel completely drained. Discouraged. There is nothing I can do for them. But pray.
And you start to think "how many people can I say "I'm praying for you. It's going to be okay" before I reach my limit on prayers?" Thankfully the answer to that is "there is no limit". God has no limit. And while I may feel overwhelmed by the number of families experiencing pain or anxiety - God is not overwhelmed. And while I may feel hesitant to reach out or feel like there's nothing I can do - God doesn't hesitate. He can do all things. I may not have been up for the task of seeking out people to pray for - so God is bringing them to me daily. And I have to believe there's a reason - that this isn't without purpose. That my prayers must be powerful - because God knows that prayer is all I have to offer these people.
He wants us to pray for each other.
He isn't showing me people in need because he wants me to feel guilty, or like my trials are not important. He wants me to remember them. He wants me to come to Him on their behalf as well as my own. And when I start to think "I can't pray about ALL these people and my family...that's too much." I immediately laugh at myself - because that it ridiculous.

The easiest way for me to understand God's love for me is to compare it to my love for Jet.
If Jet were to skin up his knee and ask me for a band-aid (which I'm sure will happen more times than I can count) - I would give it to him. I wouldn't refuse him. I want to ease his pains, fix anything I can, help him in anyway possible. Because I love him. More than myself.
And if Jet were to come to me and ask for a band-aid on behalf for his friend, his classmate, his cousin, or a complete stranger...would I deny him? Of course not. Not only because I love my child - but because it would bring joy to my heart to see him taking care of others. Loving them. Helping them. Bringing them to me because he trusts me, he loves me, he needs me.
I cannot think of a greater blessing.
We are all God's children.
And He wants nothing more than for us to come to Him, trust Him, love Him, need Him.
And His love is bigger - for if I bring another person to Him in prayer - I am not bringing Him a friend, a classmate, a cousin, a stranger...I am bringing Him one of his other children. And He will never be too busy, too overwhelmed, too aid His children.
Will we always understand His decisions?
Will we always receive the help we expected, specified, and wanted?
No. Not always.
Sometimes His help comes in ways that we can't see or understand or recognize until much later. But He will help us.
If we ask Him.
So please. Ask Him. Just go to Him in prayer and ask Him for help on behalf of Ruby and her family. Pray for her healing and comfort. Pray for strength and renewed faith for their family. Pray for the friends and family members who keep a constant vigil over her. Pray for the countless others in your lives that you know need your can't pray for them too much, too long, or too often.
Just pray.
Our Father is listening.
And that is no small thing.
It is everything.

Psalm 50:15
"Call upon Me in the day of trouble; I will deliver you, and you will honor Me."

Read about Ruby


Stephanie said...

Prayed for this sweet girl today. Such a helpless feeling about the situation, but God is in control. Thank you for sharing her story.

ainemc said...

I will pray for Ruby, What a beautiful child. Before I had Caitlin I didn't know of any baby that was ill, that needed surgeries to keep them healthy. Now, I know so many. Barely a day that goes by that I don't hear of another child that needs surgery, Caitlin herself is a one year old who has had 7 surgeries now. It's heartbreaking, and draining. But I try never to lose hope for her, and for these little ones.

Scasmflops said...

I love the way that you put prayer and the way that we share others burdens in prayer. Thank you sweet friend for your prayers on our behalf. :) I am going to pray for this sweet little girl as well.

Scasmflops said...

Oh I just clicked on her link after making my comment and this sweet little gift has gone to rest in her Heavenly Father's arms. Will be praying for her family. Wow. what a heart break, and what a way that we can minister to them in their loss- prayer.

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