Wednesday, June 10, 2015


It’s hard to fully express what I felt God working in my heart last night when my husband was reading the Jesus Calling Bible Storybook to the kids. It was the story found in Acts 16:24-40, where Paul and Silas are in prison. Worshipping. And then God worked, and removed their chains, but they stayed.

First, I must recount the definition I read this week for ‘trial’. It has really stuck with me and resonated with me.

“Trial: from the Hebrew sara or srh, which means to bind, tie up, restrict. Thus the noun comes to denote a narrow place in life where one is bound or restricted.”

I also read the truth that stated “we listen, we praise, we walk in the direction of God’s voice and we obey. It’s that simple. Sometimes that means we get to unbind and celebrate. Sometimes it means we don’t.” (Both quotes from I Will Carry You by Angie Smith)

So God tied these thoughts up together with a bow.

We are grieving. We are grieving the loss of a much loved one taken too soon by cancer. We’ve been praying that we get to unbind and celebrate the healing that we’ve been praying so desperately for. But God had other plans.

He did unbind.
He did answer.

Just not in a way we were planning.

So do we run? Do we flee? Hide? Do we turn our backs?

I’ve been feeling in a prison. That seems funny to say. But it’s a mind-picture I made even before bedtime stories last night. A prison where someone we love has cancer. We are bound, our hands are tied and unable to even help him get comfortable, much less find healing.
It has made me go mad and feel like running. It has made me get mad and feel like doubting. But I’ve given in to neither.

I stayed in the prison.
But did I worship?

Maybe. Sometimes.

Did I pray for deliverance? You bet.
But did I worship and sing hymns, focused solely on my great God, not expecting anything in return?
I’m not sure. Only God really knows.

But then, now that it is finished – as finished as that part of the trial can be this side of Heaven, for we will always feel the loss and the pain of separation – do we move on? Or do we minister?

Paul and Silas could have left to finish ‘their’ work, the mission they had planned, but they stayed where God placed them.

God penned their story, putting them right where He wanted them to serve. And so they did. And a household of people came to know Jesus because of it. (And we will get to meet them in Heaven one day!) They served in a way they never could have had they never gone through this trial. Only when their work was done there did God move them on, blessing their freedom.

So I must keep reminding myself, when I feel trapped, or bound, going through this trial, or any trials I have yet to encounter that only God knows of:



See also this post about unanswered prayers

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  1. oh, sister. i love your heart. keep letting our Savior draw you nearer to Himself. you are in my prayers!

    1. Thank you sweet sister. My deepest prayer is that I won't lose faith through this but that it will grow stronger and that I will use this opportunity to minister and share about our wonderful Savior to others.