Tammy Maltby, Guest Writer
For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven….
Ecclesiastes 3:1 ESV
The grace of God’s restoration and the wonder of God’s precise timing still boggles my mind.
I hope it boggles your mind too. I hope it gives you hope and courage to hold on through your trauma and its aftermath, to not despise small beginnings, to actively look for God’s surprises and his timely work in your life, even—especially—when pain touches your life. I hope it gives you a sense of the road ahead, of what you can expect as you walk the long crooked road back from the trauma in your life.
I have no idea how it will all work out for you and your family, but God does. I am absolutely certain that, through it all, He will be there for you. He sees your heart. He sees your deepest need. He is closer than your next breath. Even while you slog through the pain of your daily life, the unseen God is working behind the scenes and in His own timing to bring about your restoration.
Do you remember my friend, Mona? I introduced Mona to you in our first devotional with these words:
The phone call came while I was just about to embark on writing this chapter. It concerned my friend Mona—my beautiful colleague and helper who has traveled with me and had my back for endless gatherings—and her youngest son, Mitchell. Only twenty-three and newly graduated from college, Mitchell was good looking, fun loving, with an amazing future in front of him. There had been an accident. Suddenly, in a squeal of tires and the crunch of a motorcycle helmet, Mitchell was gone. Mona, a woman of strong faith, was absolutely devastated.
I’ll never forget my friend’s frantic sobs as we gathered around her, desperate to find a way to help. “When will it get better?” she kept asking. “Please tell me there will be a time when it doesn’t hurt this much.”
I was reminded once again of our unseen God, working behind the scenes, leaving treasures along Mona’s pathway, preparing her for the darkest night of her soul when I stood in my friend Mona’s bedroom, doing what I could to comfort her in her pain, feeling entirely inadequate in the face of so great a loss.
Just as I was about to leave, I ducked into the bathroom and saw it. I had to look twice. Written in large marker print on my friend’s bathroom mirror were these words. Mona had written them months before:
Your children are His and not the devil’s and you can make a case for them before the throne of God. We have the power and authority Satan does not. God provides for His children and we are His children. For I have no greater joy than to know my children are walking in truth. God knows the end of this story and His children win.
Amidst the dark lingering fog of fear, doubt, pain and not knowing, I saw. I saw Him. I saw His promise. I saw that He had given my friend a gift long before she knew how desperately she would need it. Both she and her son had won. We all win . . . because we are His.
Nothing can take us out of His hand. Our names are written on His palm. No suffering or trauma on earth can separate us from His love. Though the battle rages on, and the dark fog of life circumstances threaten to derail us . . . nothing escapes His watchful eye. Wherever you find yourself today my friend, whatever you carry, He sees you. If you are His, no matter what happens . . . you win.
STORE UP MORE TREASURES
At some point in our lives, we or someone we know will go through great suffering. I encourage you to go the MARKINC website and listen to the interview “Helping Your Teens With Same-Sex Attraction" so that you can store up treasures of encouragement for the next rainy day in your life or someone else's. Here is a summary and teaser of this resource:
How does a parent help a child navigate sexuality when so many forces come against a biblical worldview? This interview offers practical help so that parents can respond with confidence and wisdom as they help their children understand sexual integrity in a sexually broken world.
Tammy Maltby is a speaker, author and media personality with a heart for helping women live rich, authentic lives. Through the gift of hospitality, she mentors women to embrace community and connect through faith and food. Tammy empowers women to start simply but simply start! A ten-year cohost of the two time Emmy-winning NRB-TV talk show of the year Aspiring Women, Tammy has been featured on hundreds of radio and television programs, including Focus on the Family, Family Life Today, Life Today with James and Betty Robinson, The 700 Club, Midday Connection and CBN’s Living the Life. She was the ongoing emcee for the John Maxwell’s international THRIVE! events.She is the mother of four grown children, two of whom are internationally adopted and seven beautiful grandsons. Tammy makes her home in Colorado Springs Co with her husband Jerry Melchisedeck Sr.
Today’s devotion was adapted from: The God Who Sees You: Look to Him When You Feel Discouraged, Forgotten, or Invisible by Tammy Maltby; David C. Cook, 2012
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Contact Sharon with comments or questions at firstname.lastname@example.org.