I woke up at 4:00am this morning to wind that was howling and a relentless and pounding rain. I had hoped to instantly fall back into my peaceful slumber, but the unsettledness of the weather seemed to somehow awaken the unsettledness of my mind.
Before bed last night, I got a text from a mutual friend who shared that our friend Michael Einfeldt was once again struggling. Issues with his stomach had sent him to Stony Brook Hospital a few days ago and this in itself was so disheartening. We had heard an update that after being at the hospital he was doing better and for that we were so thankful. But finding out last night that once again he was hurting brought a crushing sadness to my heart and one that kept me awake and wondering early this morning.
How do you encourage others who are enduring so much sadness? What do you say when the hurt and the pain is just so big? And how do you keep moving forward when the troubles just keep pushing you back?
For the past year and three months, we’ve watched our friend Michael and his family go through an unthinkable and at times, a seemingly unsurmountable journey. We’ve prayed and prayed for healing and for recovery. We’ve seen God’s hand working in and through so many, but the journey has continued on and the struggles have kept coming. And in these times, we’ve felt brokenhearted and crushed because it’s just so painful at times to see those you love in pain.
But in times of trouble, I have to choose to fill my mind with truth. I was drawn back to Psalm 34 this morning and even in my sadness I could feel the power of the words of David as he wrote: “The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears them; he delivers them from all their troubles. The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.”
We are not alone in our sadness and struggles. God knows every sorrow that we carry. And not only does he know, he can empathize because He is a loving Father who also saw His only Son go through great pain and struggle. For me this year, anticipating Easter is not simply about colored eggs and chocolate bunnies. It’s remembering that God experienced pain and suffering as His Son experienced pain and suffering sacrificing his life for us on the cross. And as Easter gets closer and we continue to walk along side of loved ones who are hurting, this realization can bring such hope and healing to our hurting hearts.
Please pray for Michael today. Please pray that God will work what is best for him and for his family. Please also pray for those loved ones in your life who are struggling. And please pray for the comfort that comes in knowing that no matter what we are going through, God indeed saves those who are brokenhearted and crushed in spirit.