I was a young twenty-something looking around the waiting room at a bunch of forty-something year old women. Infertility branded me barren for a season and anger seeped out of my pores like sweat.
Like so many other appointments gone wrong, the treatment wasn’t working and I couldn’t wish away the pink grave stone in the cemetery down the street – the stone that marked the end of my baby daughter’s life here on earth before it truly began.
I had choir practice that evening. I was to rehearse my solo with the whole choir behind me. It was a Brooklyn Tabernacle upbeat song designed to bring the congregation to their feet. The problem was that I was having a hard time standing on mine.
I arrived at practice and took my place on the platform. With microphone in hand I prepared to sing. It was the last place I wanted to be, and not a single note sounded like I wanted it to sound. I had a difficult time translating the feeling of joy within the song when there was so much uncertainty about what God was doing in my own life.
I felt let down by God and my heart showed signs of a break. But the break wasn’t clean. it was messy and the edges were jagged. It seemed it would never fit back together again.
Those are some of my very favorite words in the entire Bible, because despite our circumstances or how things might feel…
But God has a plan.
But God has a purpose.
But God never lets us down.
I’ve been talking a lot about stones, both living and dead. The stone on my daughters grave mixed with my inability to become pregnant again weighed me down that evening at choir practice. And though I may not have been at my best vocally, or had a skip in my step, the point is that I chose to sing through it. And though my legs may have wobbled, I stood still in the stillness of Jesus.
I’m not patting myself on the back.
It took me years of reflecting on that moment to see that God was holding me up and giving me the air I needed to sing. Every note was an offering.
It took thousands of tears and angry words before I could thank Him for the grief that drove me closer to Him.
On September 19, 2009, I wrote in the margin of my Bible, next to Isaiah 40, the following words…
“God is calling me to use my testimony to strengthen and comfort hurting people.”
Our deepest grief transforms into our greatest gifts. (tweet that)
The interesting thing about the entry in the margin of my Bible, is the date I recorded it. I began my blog on September 19, 2012. I wrote the above passage three years to the day before I ever wrote a single word, before I ever had a single thought about a blog or even knew what a blog was.
The hand of God was working, friend.
His hand was working through every tear and transformed them into a gift I didn’t even know I possessed.
And I believe the same is happening for you.
But God has gifts stored deep inside you.
But God is waiting for the grief to stir them up, that you might use them to love others and be healed. In the process, He will be glorified.
“Comfort, yes, comfort My people!” Says, your God.
Today in the comments, can you share a time you pushed through your grief to use your gift and stand in the stillness of Christ? I would love to hear your heart speak.
If you’ve missed any part of this series, click here.
PS: In honor of Write 31 Days I’m having a special giveaway. If you subscribe to my blog via email, Amazon will send you a kindle edition of my book, Nothing to Hold but Hope, as a gift. The offer is good through October 7th 2015.