Life In The Midst Of The Storm

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When we were on our way to Louisiana for Papaw’s funeral we ran into a rain storm. You know the kind where you can hardly see the car in front of you? The picture above was taken in the midst of the storm. The storm was so bad and visibility was so low that all of the cars had their flashers on to try to be more visible.

In April a storm hit our family full strength. Like a hurricane we had warning signs, but when the warning signs were coming we didn’t know the strength of the storm that was behind them. This storm was in the form of illness in one of our children. Unfortunately it wasn’t the type of illness that you can put a band-aid on or treat with medicine. It was an illness of the heart and mind brought on by extreme heartbreak. Our daughter Sarah will be 26 next month, but mentally she is 6 and along with that comes the innocence of a young child. She loves and lives in a world that doesn’t comprehend unkindness and the inability to show love. She was plunged head long into that realization, and it took a hard toll on her.

For weeks that have turned into months we have been unsure of her outcome. We honestly don’t know if she will ever be the same again. There are changes that I think will help her in the future, she is seeming to learn to cope with things which she had be sheltered from in the past. At times we see a break in the clouds and in the distance we can see hope. But it’s in the distance.

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I have been trying to get life back to some semblance of normal. I don’t know what normal really is anymore. For 8 weeks it was me sitting on the couch beside Sarah every waking minute trying to make a connection with her and sleeping on the couch in the family room while she slept on a air bed a few feet away. Many of those nights were sleepless, full of worry, anxiety, confusion, prayer, and desperation. I can say I have never felt so desperate as I have in the last few months. Desperate to know how to help my child, desperate to fix things, desperate to have God give me clear direction. And He has. I can’t count the times that He has given me clear direction as to how to help her, and when I have followed that leading, I have been given what I need most of all . . . hope.

He really does offer help for the hopeless, because I have been that hopeless person as of late, not understanding, feeling like I am walking through a storm that has no end; hoping I don’t get lost in the process.

I have been so blessed to have the husband I have and Hannah, Rachel, and Caroline who have all been here on a daily basis to bring encouragement to me when I felt I couldn’t make it another moment, much less another day. Life has been raw. Ripped open. Shredded. But even in the midst of this God is glorious! He is brings restoration to my heart and healing to my soul.

Sarah needs your prayers. We all do. We are so thankful for the prayers and encouragement of extended family and friends. It can be heartbreaking to not know if she will be the same again. Mourning is part of daily life here now, mourning and missing the Sarah that was, and now mourning the loss of Papaw.

I don’t know what lies ahead. I just know that I’m trusting my Savior to bring us through it and sanctify us in the process.

8 thoughts on “Life In The Midst Of The Storm

  1. Thank you so much for sharing all of that Lora. I can’t imagine how difficult that was – even just trying to make sense of everything enough to write about it! I appreciate your honesty and “rawness”. I also find it utterly amazing that God always gives us answers in those most desperate moments – the question is whether or not we will listen to that still small voice in our “gut”, or listen first to the louder much more “in our face” voices around us. Everything you and I have talked about with Sarah, and what I said I thought the problem (or solution) was — you already knew! I didn’t tell you anything you didn’t already know – I just confirmed what you were already feeling God guide you to in side. And sometimes it’s those confirmations outside, that give us the confidence to follow our “inside”. 🙂 While not at ALL as terrifying as what all you have had to go through recently, I remember when Jesse was an infant and we had taken him off of all allergy-ridden foods. All he could eat was fruits, vegetables, and rice. But something was still wrong with my little baby. Inside I thought “the rice”. But more experienced, wise mothers told me that was impossible. Doctors said that rice was the ONLY food that EVERYONE can tolerate. I ignored what I thought was myself (and in hindsight it was God). When I finally took the plunge and removed rice, he was SO much better!!! I have many regrets in my motherhood days of listening to others instead of God inside of me – Who (being omniscient) knew what was really going on, and was revealing that to me. I think it’s normal though for us – in those moments of utter desperation – to listen to others instead of ourselves (our clueless, inexperienced selves). When we discover it is not ourselves though who is speaking, it is God, then hope is birthed and change can occur – whether that is with our children, or within ourselves. Thank you so much for your post Lora. You always have such wisdom and authenticity that is often rare to find!

    • Dear Sweet Carissa,
      You have been a rock to me during all of these dark days! You have helped me more than you know. Though you are young enough to be my daughter, you are my dear friend and I cherish you! Thank you for all of the advice and encouragement you have provided over the last year.

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  3. Dear Lora,
    Somehow I missed this important post. without it, I couldn’t know your heart and what you are walking through right now. We are walking through a very dark time now, too, but of a different nature. the Lord is showing me that what I must do is praise Him…simple praise and thank Him for this terrible trial with a sacrifice of praise. I am praying for dear Sarah. How we as mothers must know that the dear Lord loves our children even much more than we do and He IS doing something. He who began a good work will be faithful to complete it, and He can and will make something beautiful of what Satan meant for evil. Dear Lord, I pray with Lora that You will do a restorative work in Sarah’s mind and body. Thank you for Your goodness even not knowing the outcome and may this terrible trial bring glory and honor to Your name and a rich testimony of Your mercy and grace one day. Help this dear family to bear up under it as You do the work in them. Bless this family with healing and strength. Please comfort them and give them wisdom for each day. Hide them in the Rock until the storm is past and bring them forth refined as pure gold. Lord, we long to see You and be with You. Life is so painful…come quickly Lord Jesus. Have mercy on us, I pray. In the precious, beautiful name of Jesus.
    Lora, I value your friendship. I will fervently pray. Love you in the Lord, sweet friend!

    • Jacqueline,
      Thank you for your words of comfort and compassion. Your prayer touched my heart again today as I read it. I’m sorry I haven’t responded before today. You are a blessing and encouragement to me. I pray that the Lord is working in the midst of your trials and know that He will be glorified through all of our struggles.

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