When we experience something difficult, it’s our natural tendency to reach out to others who have experienced something similar. It is somehow comforting to know that we are not alone in our suffering.
Several women have reached out to me for encouragement as they attempt to seek God during dark hours in the NICU. I did the same thing back in July 2017. However, I reached out to my father-in-law, because I knew he would give me wise words to cling to. This is what he told me and what I continue to share with others every opportunity I am given.
When to use this:
When your child is sick and you realize it’s completely out of your hands, be encouraged by these words.
When you are sitting in that dimly lit hospital room with noises and beeps going on all around you, meditate on this.
In the middle of the night when you are supposed to be resting to preserve your strength for your little one, say these prayers and verses over and over again.
When you have lost your baby and you are just not sure you can make it through the grief, focus on God’s promises.
OR when you aren’t going through something that involves a baby but are just going through a difficult time in life, refocus your energy to God.
And then, when you come out of this scary or uncertain or discouraging place, share this encouragement with another woman or person who needs it!
Two prayers to pray daily, hourly or every minute:
1. “Lord, help me I’m sinking” (KJV—modern versions say “Lord, save me”), Matthew 14:30-31. Jesus’ “immediately” reaches forth his hand and raises Peter up. Pray this every day, all day long, especially when you find yourself giving into negative, pessimistic thoughts.
2. “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit!,” Luke 23:46. I think it’s significant that the Lord Jesus ENTRUSTED himself to his FATHER. Remember, his Father is your Father, John 20:17. Entrust yourself to him every day, all day long—especially when you feel overwhelmed with discouragement. “Father, into your hands I commit myself (and my baby) at this moment. You are my Father. You love me more than I can imagine. I trust you!”
The Father Loves You
The Father has shown you how MUCH He loves each of you by sending His Son to die for you. You are not Christians first and foremost because you have “asked Jesus into your heart as your Lord and Savior.” You are Christians, first and foremost, because from before the foundation of the world the Father chose to have you as His own. He has committed to doing you good. In spite of the pain – in fact, THROUGH this pain – He is up to your good.
Thank God Now
The day will come when you PRAISE God for what’s troubling you now. So, begin THANKING Him NOW (Ephesians 5:20, 1 Thessalonians 5:18). How?
Thank Him that He’s your Father.
Thank Him that He’s in control.
Thank Him that He loves you and your baby.
Thank Him that whatever He does He will do because He loves you.
And thank Him that He doesn’t forget how hard and painful this is.
He’s got shoulders big enough to handle our questions and griefs!
Confess Your Failures
When you fail – when you get upset, doubt, worry, fuss, and complain – confess it and believe He forgives you because He does (1 John 1:9); thank Him for bringing you back to Himself; and begin walking with Him again.
All Things are for Good
While in the middle of this difficult time, no part of this seems “good.” But, God promises us in Romans 8:28 that “all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”
Remember: It’s a battle!
You’ll have to fight every single day. Having to fight isn’t a sign of weakness; it’s a sign of life! Dead people don’t fight. Living people do.
Dr. Charley L. Chase is my beloved father-in-law. He has been a pastor for many years and has a ministry called Grace Focused Optimism. He is a great encouragement to me and many others. I am blessed to have a such a wonderful example in my life of a humble Christian with the deepest desire to glorify God through his life and ministry. Please follow his blog at http://gracefocusedoptimism.com.