Every time we do a medical clinic in Uganda, we encounter unbelievable need. One year, while we were holding a clinic in a remote village, I noticed a young boy curled up under a tree unable to stand. His body was completely and permanently locked in a fetal position. I later learned that he had polio as a baby and the disease left his body permanently mangled. As I watched him, I noticed that every time he moved he would cry out in extreme pain. When it was his turn to be seen by our medical team, his mom picked him up and carried him toward the clinic. With each step she took it his cries grew louder as pain shot through his little body. My heart broke for this little guy as I watched the tears stream down his face. I remember thinking, He doesn’t know what is going on. He doesn’t know where his mom is taking him or why she is letting him suffer in this way. He doesn’t understand his pain. But this loving mother knew what she was doing. She knew where her son needed to be and she was carrying him there – through the pain.
We do not always understand the trials and the pain that we go through. We cry out to God and ask him why He is not taking care of us. Why He would allow such awful things to happen to us or to someone we love. There have been plenty of arguments made for the problem of evil, addressing the question “Why does God allow suffering?” But I think this issue ultimately comes down to one fundamental question. Do you trust Him? Do you trust that He has a plan? Do you trust that He is able to take your circumstances and use them for His glory and your good?
For my wife and I, the past few years have been some of the most painful and trying years of our lives. We were so fragile it seemed like everything could shatter in an instant. All we could do is cling to God with everything we had, and trust Him. We knew that if we did not, we would fall apart. We dug deep into God’s word and clung onto every promise we could find. In the midst of those painful days God led us to Psalm 28:7-9.
“The Lord is my strength and my shield;
In him my heart trusts, and I am helped…
Oh, save your people and bless your heritage!
Be their shepherd and carry them forever.”
Trusting God does not mean that everything is going to be easy. But I can promise you that no matter your situation, He will carry you through. Maybe you are in the midst of one of those times right now. It seems that with each step things get more and more painful. Maybe you don’t even know if you have the strength to stand anymore. Know this: Our God is faithful and His strength is made perfect in your weakness. He has a plan and He knows what He’s doing. Do you trust him?