Since I often talk about the importance of getting into the Word, I started a series where I share one scripture or passage of scripture each Wednesday and talk about why it has meant so much to me. I hope it encourages you to get into the Word and to use these scriptures as starting points perhaps, but to also find meaningful things in the Bible on your own as well.
Ever since my first miscarriage I feel like I've been on a roller coaster; highs and lows that I feel are out of my control. But I've noticed there is one thing that keeps me stable, and that is God's Word. Hebrews 4:12 says that it is ALIVE, meaning that we can interact and engage with it! When you open His Word with an open mind, He will fill it as you read and you will walk away feeling encouraged, challenged, peaceful, and joyful no matter your earthly circumstances!
You keep track of all my sorrows.
You have collected all my tears in your bottle.
You have recorded each one in your book.
| PSALM 56:8 |
This verse contains so much wonder! I am continually struck with surprise and gratitude each week as I write about scriptures that have meant a lot to me throughout this hard season of my life going through two miscarriages. I say surprise and gratitude because it is crazy to me that until I endured suffering, all of these scriptures were just words on a page. And I am filled with gratitude that God has called me to this path of suffering where I get to know Him in the most intimate ways.
I hate that I've had to endure the death of two babies; it is heart wrenching. But I also hate that it took those two deaths to draw me this close to Him. Shouldn't we always be this close to the Lord? So close that we cling to Him and His Word each day? I hate to admit it, but I was never that close until my easy life ran right into a brick wall.
After my first loss I was very, very sensitive to grief. I loved listening to anyone's story about what caused them grief-- it wasn't that I loved what happened to them, but I loved hearing how God worked through them. I guess it gave me hope. So when Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth started a series on her podcast, Revive Our Hearts, with Margaret Nyman about being a widow, I was all ears. Margaret spoke about how hard it was to be a widow-- she didn't sugarcoat things. But she also spoke about all of the ways God tenderly took care of her.
She also said something that was a little hard to swallow at first: She felt called to widowhood. She felt called to suffering. I thought she was crazy! But throughout that week as I listened to this series, I slowly began to realize that I also felt called to my own suffering. Partly because I believe in God's sovereignty. I know that He has me exactly where He wants me and if He wanted me to have my baby in my arms, I would. He has put a love in my heart for everything that you see on this website to help grieving women.
Margaret wrote a devotional for widows called Hope for an Aching Heart: Uplifting Devotions for Widows and I bought it after listening to her speak with Nancy. I knew it was for widows, but she said anyone could read it, whether they were also going through a hard time themselves, or wanted to be able to better help a friend facing widowhood. If you order it you will not be disappointed. Each devotion is really short, perfect for someone in the throes of grief, yet so encouraging.
One of my favorite devotions she wrote was about Psalm 56:8. She talked about how much you cry in the midst of grief, but connected it to the promise found in this verse. Instead of trying to paraphrase her beautiful words, I am just going to quote her because she says it best!
A bottle full of tears is a potent image of several things: God’s nearness to anyone who’s upset to the point of tears, and his mysterious ability that he can somehow collect literal tears...If it is a literal statement, what might that bottle look like? Because the scriptural word for it is singular, it would have to be one giant bottle! What could God possibly want with those tears? They’re salty, as all of us can testify, having caught them with our tongues as they’ve run past our mouths. They are also clear. According to Revelation (22:1), heaven will have a “river of life” running from the throne of God, “as clear as crystal.” Is it possible God plans to use our tears to create this supernatural river? Could it be a “salt water river?” Just when we become completely speechless over such a possibility, we get another inexplicable fact from the same verse. It says God records each tear in a book. Such detailed record-keeping is imponderable, but we’ve always known the Lord was good with detail. He keeps track of all our sorrows (same verse) and cares deeply about our suffering. -Margaret Nyman
Her words are so comforting to me and have come to my mind on some of my hardest days. Your tears have a purpose! And He cares about each tear that falls, so much so, that He records why each one has fallen as He collects them in His bottle.
Past Wednesdays In The Word:
Remember to check out what my friend Anne Marie is doing over at The Loved Bible Project! She wrote this sweet post about Wednesdays In The Word and how we are teaming up! Each week I will continue to post about a scripture that has helped me in my time of loss and Anne Marie is going to make a free printable that you can find in her Resources page! We encourage you to print it out and spend time soaking in God's Word as you decorate it and then include it in your own Bible or start working on a Loved Bible!