the HEART of Sarah

My Aunt Sarah was diagnosed with cancer when she was 41. I was just a kid so I wasn’t in on all the grown-up conversations between my parents and grandparents about her prognosis or the difficulties she must have had being sick and raising two teenage daughters. Her death stunned me. Then seeing my Grandpa and Grandma so utterly grieved.  Worrying about my cousins and imagining how deep and sad their loss was – It was a hard time for my family.

Aunt Sarah was one of the most Godly women I’ve ever known. What I didn’t know about her then, I have learned from her daughters over the last 21 years. And it seems the older I get the more Sarah’s life impacts me. She was the ultimate homemaker and mother. But the thing that I find most amazing is that she believed until the moment she died that God was going to heal her.

On the morning of December 20, 1991, Jimmy Evans, their pastor and family friend went to visit Sarah for the last time. He sat by her bedside and said goodbye. At one point, Sarah said to him, “Jimmy, where is your faith?” That moves me to tears every time I think about it. Where is your faith? Hours away from death, and that was her question.

We know that we will never fully understand healing on this side of Heaven. But I think it’s an important topic because the Bible is pretty clear that we are to ask for it and expect it. I think God wants to teach us something about that and for some of us it’s a journey to get there. I walked this valley with Erik 9 years ago and could write volumes about how Erik was healed even though he never recovered from heart disease and finally had to have a transplant. And now with Bryce, I find myself not knowing exactly how to pray……So I look to Sarah’s story and I know this is where it starts for me.  This is where my search for understanding began so many years ago and it’s through Sarah’s walk that I’m finding the truth.

And the truth is, Sarah did not spend her time believing FOR something. She believed God would heal her, but her faith was not in the healing. Her faith was in the Person who could change her circumstances in a breath. And knowing full well that He just might not do what she was asking. To me, that is the most staggering, mind-blowing, amazing kind of faith. She believed God was going to heal her, but decided that even if he didn’t, she still believed HIM.

I think in Bryce’s situation, I let my faith become centered around a promise that he wouldn’t get sick. And it turns out that putting your faith in anything but God is the fastest way into confusion and anger. His ways are not my ways….another truth that takes a lifetime to learn.

I know eventually I will have more to say about Bryce’s heart and the direction all of this is headed. For today, all I can think about is that young woman whose faith never wavered, because her faith was not in her healing. Her faith was in the Healer.

Isaiah 55:8-9

For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
neither are your ways my ways,
declares the LORD.
As the heavens are higher than the earth,
so are my ways higher than your ways
and my thoughts than your thoughts.

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