By Lisa Huddleston
“For we are His creation—created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared ahead of time so that we should walk in them.” (Ephesians 2:10)
I’ve seen a miracle this week. No, I haven’t seen handwriting on a wall. I haven’t seen the lame get up and walk. And I haven’t seen the dead come back to life. Okay … maybe technically what I’ve witnessed hasn’t been an actual miracle, but then again maybe it has. Let me tell you as much of the story as I know and leave it up to you.
A young mother, who is a former member of our church, lost her second child this past Saturday. It had been a difficult pregnancy, and both babies had been born extremely prematurely. Baby John lived only a short while, but his sister Hallie fought hard for a couple of months. This past Saturday, she was released from her struggle, and her parents handed her back to the Lord. I am certain that their hearts ached as they realized that they were not going to receive the miracle of healing for which they and so many others had prayed. Knowing that they now live in Texas and assuming the depth of their grief, I was surprised to learn that the Kinsers were going to be in our church this Sunday morning and that Kate, the babies’ mother, wanted to speak to our congregation. Frankly, I was a little concerned about it thinking it might be too early for such a public venture. But soon after hearing about their plans, I received an email from Kate that changed my heart. She wrote to ask if my daughter would be willing to sing a special song during the worship service. She had heard Sarah sing “The Servant Song” a couple of years ago and said that she had been hearing it in her head ever since John’s death. I was amazed, because as I talked it over with Sarah, I realized that “The Servant Song” had already been scheduled for Sunday’s service nearly four weeks ago. And Sarah was on the scheduled rotation for the Praise Team for that very day. God’s tender care for this family overwhelmed me!
And that isn’t the whole story. Every song that had already been chosen for this weekend speaks words that will minster to this couple and to anyone else in attendance who has ever experienced a loss of his own. We will begin by singing of God’s sovereignty and holiness in “I See the Lord.” Then the choir will sing about God’s sacrificial gift of His Son in “For God So Loved the World.” Then I am scheduled to share an original song that God woke me up singing one morning, “Giver of All Things,” that reminds us that all things—good and bad—come from Him. (Was this song given for the Kinsers?) Next the congregation will respond to Him by singing “I Give My All.” I can’t help thinking that He is telling us all that He knows how we feel. He knows how bad it hurts to lose those we love. He knows, because He hurts with us. And He’s letting us know that He knows by preparing a personal and caring time of worship in which Kate can share her heart. He prepared this time ahead of Hallie’s passing. He was not surprised by her early birth or her early death, and He is in control. Again … I am amazed by His tenderness.
Does this count as a miracle? I’m still not sure, but I do know that we haven’t yet heard the whole story. I am looking forward to what Kate will share. I anticipate that it will be covered with fingerprints of His love and will confirm the supernatural involvement of His Holy Spirit. He goes ahead of us to show us the way! We are His creation, and He has prepared the works we should walk in—and they are good.
Jesus told His disciples, “Your heart must not be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many dwelling places; if not, I would have told you. I am going away to prepare a place for you. If I go away and prepare a place for you, I will come back and receive you to Myself, so that where I am you may be also. You know the way where I am going” (John 14:1-4). Hallie and John Kinser know the Way. They have already discovered the place prepared for them. And the tender preparations of our Heavenly Father for their parents show us that we can know the way, too. And I mean really know Him. Jesus is the Way—miraculously simple and amazingly personal.
Have you discovered the Way? Do you know the touch of the One who holds all things in His hands? If not, I pray that you will find Him today. Or if not today maybe this Sunday in the tearful words of a mother’s testimony of love.