Jennifer Kostick– Jennifer has been married for twenty-three years to her high school sweetheart, Paul. She is the mother of three children, Paul IV (22), Samuel (6), and Grace (6). She also has six babies residing in heaven. It is those six tiny souls who have propelled her into women’s ministry. She is a conference speaker and author of the book Nothing to Hold but Hope (one woman's journey through miscarriage, stillbirth, and infertility). Jennifer blogs at www.Jenniferkostick.com and is passionate about encouraging women through a godly message of mercy and hope.
Saturday morning, Paul and I walked the trails at a nearby park while watching our children ride bikes. I followed behind one while he stayed ahead of the other.
As parents, we keep watch and protect. It’s our job.
The sun was shining bright, but it was windy and there was a chill in the air. The kids asked for a break, so we stopped to rest and took a photo. I forced a smile. I usually love a cool breeze on a bright, sunny day. Something about it gives me a sense of freedom, but I was feeling anything but free. Grief is persuasive. It keeps inviting me on long walks. It’s desperate to grab me by the hand and lead.
And then I remember that the wind is the spirit of God and that His breath is the force behind it. He’s always moving; He’s always breathing.
There is an old song with lyrics proclaiming, “Mama said there’d be days like this.” Well, I specifically recall that Jesus Himself said…
“…These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.”
Yes, Jesus said there’d be days like this. Days when we’re tired, worn, and grief-ridden. Days when others would hate us because of our love for Him. However, He didn’t just tell us we would experience trouble and then walk away. He gave us a solution. He overcame death. Through His triumph, He continues to deliver brand new mercy. We have grace. We have hope.
I didn’t attend church with my family on Sunday. I rarely ever miss, but I needed to fall on my knees in an empty house and tell Him everything. Out loud. I needed to open up the Bible in a place so quiet that I could hear the thin, worn pages turn to the words He had for me. And then, I needed to take a walk in the sunshine, turn my face to the sky and say, “Okay, I surrender. Again.”
Sometimes, we just need space to navigate through grief. We need a moment to breathe in the fresh new mercy, remember hope, and shake off the hand of grief that wants to lead. We need time to speak a resounding NO to anything that isn’t Jesus led.
I told you that my husband and I watch and protect our kids while they ride. Guess what? We have a God who watches and protects us throughout this crazy ride of life. However, we don’t always feel it.
Saturday, while on the bike trails, my daughter stopped peddling halfway up a hill. The bike began moving backwards and she screamed as she was headed back down the hill with zero control. My husband ran to catch her. She didn’t fall. In fact, she didn’t experience one scrape, but she was scared to death. Even though she was safe, fear held her tight and she didn’t feel protected.
Yesterday, I didn’t feel the freedom I know He died to give me, but that doesn’t change the fact that it exists. Whether I feel it or not, I am free. And I am safe, even when fear and grief want to overtake me.
I believe when we throw off the heavy bands that try to hold us back, peace comes and He sends the angels to minister.
After Jesus faced temptation from the enemy, the angels ministered to Him.
“Then the devil left Him, and behold, angels came and ministered to Him.”
I often pray that He will send His angels to minister to my children, to those I love, and even to me. Because let’s face it: We need Him.
Friend, If you are having a difficult time navigating through grief, you are not alone. You have hope. His name is Jesus. I’m praying He will send His angels to minister peace to you. You have a future and a hope. (See Jeremiah 29:11) No matter what you are facing, don’t let it paralyze you with fear.
You might feel like you are headed down a steep hill, one hundred miles per hour, backwards. Friend, let go of the handlebars. He’s going to catch you. Surrender. Shake off the heavy bands. Want God, friend! Want God! He wants you.
Since I mentioned Lisa Whittle’s book, I think it’s a good day to have a giveaway! It’s been a long time since I’ve hosted one. Just leave a comment on the blog telling why you want God, and you will be entered to win a copy of the book. I will announce the winner Friday, April 17th. (The winner will be chosen at random.)
Have a beautiful day!
My eBook, Mercy Waits, is FREE to new subscribers.