Looking at these pictures just cracks me up. The three of us are so blessed to have each other. I can't imagine not having my sisters. We may have not always gotten along, but we have always loved each other. I remember wanting to have friends over in the summer time and my mom, who was probably tired of having others over, would say, "You don't need anyone to come over, you have your sisters." I'm sure it was annoying at the time, but she was right.
Over the last few weeks I have been thinking about the three of us and how much we have grown over the past 5 years (yes, we have gained and lost a bit of weight, but I mean in our faith). I think back to the night in the hospital with dad and the countless people who had told us, "There is just something different about your dad," we knew what it was all along. As I held is chubby, Papa Bear hand I could feel the callouses and he just had a peaceful look on his face. As I stood there and watched the numbers count down I felt my heart literally crush inside my chest. I couldn't even imagine what life would be like. Here I was pregnant with my first baby and I just lost my hero in life. It was physically hard to breath at times. None of us are the same since that night, but I can say, as I look at my sisters, we are much stronger than we used to be. Our heart was crushed and our true faith came out.
As many of you know, the last year and a half has been a bit different than I had planned, and once again I found myself in a situation where I was not sure I would be able to breath and get through it. As I heard the doctor say that he thought Annika had a genetic disorder where she might never walk, talk, crawl, say "I love you" and may other things, I felt my heart being crushed inside my chest from the pain of all the things I thought I would miss out on. Even as I write that I feel a tightening in my chest that makes it heard to breath. I know I am not the only one in my family who felt their heart crushing as we imagined the future. But once again, as my heart was crushed my faith grew stronger. I had developed a trusting relationship with God over the years, so during this time I had strength that could only come from Him.
Over the past 5 1/2 years I have seen the three of us grow closer and closer together, even if we were farther apart in miles. When I call my sisters with anxiety about what the future holds or just frustrated about life, they are the first ones to say, "Let's pray right now." And in that moment my heart feels lighter as I turn to the one, my Savior, who is stronger than all my fears, all my worries, and my sadness. My sisters have helped me to remember what is really important in life. Together we have challenged each other to work at becoming the women of faith we were created to be. It is not an easy road and many time we find ourselves in a sea of self-pity or anger, but, guess what, I have two sisters to pull me out where I am back on the solid promises of Jesus Christ.
So, the question is, if your heart is crushed what truth would be revealed? What is inside your heart and what would you turn to in that time? We have to learn to trust before we can have strength in Jesus. And we gain that trust by daily spending time with Him, knowing His characteristics so that in those heart crushing times we will have complete trust and strength in who He is. There is no magic pill to get more strength; it comes from trusting God and everything He has in store for your life. I am thankful for my sisters who always build me up, encourage me to rise above my situation, and give all the glory to God. Like the old hymn, "Tis so sweet to trust in Jesus, Just to take him at his word, Just to rest upon his promise, and to know, "Thus saith the Lord!"
What would be revealed in your heart if it was crushed by some sort of bad news?
"The joy of the Lord is my strength" Nehemiah 8:10