Soul Strength

-Written by Anna-

Knowing that transition will be hard makes it easier…right?

As a Missionary and Pastor’s Kid, I have spent my life transitioning. In fact I think I have almost prided myself on the fact that while I have never enjoyed it, I have learned the ‘tools’ that I need to transition well.

The last seven weeks have humbled me!

All week I had braced myself for this next transition, our fourth in just under seven weeks. We had done this before and I knew what to expect this time. I knew it was going to be rough and I sought to prepare myself for it. And even as the day of the move came I kept moving forward fairly well.

I kept moving forward as the time for the arrival of the ambulance changed three times.

I kept moving forward as I watched Mom struggle through her nausea and pain.

I kept moving forward as we said goodbye to all the therapists and nurses that we had come to love.

I kept moving forward as we packed up again and unpacked in a new place.

I kept moving forward as I was informed that no accommodations were made for family to stay the night so I would be sleeping in a non-reclining chair (didn’t want to leave her alone the first night).

I kept moving forward as Mom’s headache reached a ten (pain level) but the pharmacy had not delivered her medications yet so there was nothing to do but watch and wait.

I kept moving forward as we met all new people, learned new rules and systems.

I kept moving forward until I couldn’t move forward anymore. And about 2am, sitting on my chair watching my Mom trying so hard to sleep in spite of the pain, I cried out to the Lord like I hadn’t since our initial crisis the day of and after the stroke. The tears fell like they hadn’t in awhile. And the night felt dark. But a dear friend had reminded me earlier in this journey that every night ends with a sunrise and every sunrise reminds us that Christ has defeated darkness (my summary of a passage in A Life Together by Bonhoeffer). And its true! The sun came up! Our situation had not changed but His mercies were new. When I couldn’t move forward anymore He had carried us through our night! Just like He has carried us through every night of the last seven weeks and just like He carried us even when we took it all for granted.

Strength is something that we are praying for every day, for ourselves and of course for Mom. But at this moment none of us have much of it. We feel carried by the Lord Himself and the prayers of His people. As I read a verse that a friend had given to us my eyes were drawn to an earlier verse in the chapter that really ministered to my weary soul.

On the day I called, you answered me;

my strength of soul you increased.(Psalm 138:3)

When we call, He answers! What an amazing God we serve! And not only that He can increase the strength of my soul! The Bible doesn’t talk a lot about physical strength. God’s glory is actually best seen in our weakest moments (Mom is teaching us that every day!). But while He doesn’t promise us physical strength, He does promise us strength of soul! So that has become my new prayer for all of us! Thank you for your continued love and prayers! Even though the transition is hard we are getting settled in and she is in a good place and receiving good care!

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37 thoughts on “Soul Strength

  1. Our Bible Study group in New Jersey is remembering you in our prayers. We are studying Stan’s book, The Last Word, and learning new truths as we delve into the book of Revelation.
    Our continued love and prayers as you adjust to your new facility and gain the strength you need to heal.
    ❤️🙏

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  2. Beautiful testimony of God’s grace in the midst of real pain. In those times I am ever reminded that Jesus understands in a way no one else can. He bears our sorrows–snuggle into Him for tonight and rest. Praying faithfully for you all. Thank you for the truthful update–it helps us know how to pray. God bless you all.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Absolutely love this line “snuggle into Him tonight and rest”! It conjures up the intimacy God wants to have with us and reminds me of my own Dad who I loved to snuggle with as a child, which always brought good rest. It was a tremendous blessing to have a father, so like our Heavenly Father.

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  3. oh, the depth of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of God, His paths beyond tracing out.
    God! please strengthen the soul of your servant as she kept moving forward walking with.

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  4. Liz-
    I know Jesus is intimately holding your family now. He is waking us during the night for prayer for your mom and your family . Please know this, he is there, never turning away, embracing you. We hold your pain in high honor and we pray.

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  5. Journey was the first email I read today.
    Just as I finished reading, my “Verse for the Day popped in my inbox.
    January 31
    Romans 8:31
    31 What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?
    …….couldn’t help then thinking of the old hymn……
    All the way my Savior leads me;
    What have I to ask beside?
    Can I doubt His tender mercy,
    Who through life has been my Guide?
    Heav’nly peace, divinest comfort,
    Here by faith in Him to dwell!
    For I know, whate’er befall me,
    Jesus doeth all things well,
    For I know, whate’er befall me,
    Jesus doeth all things well.

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  6. Annie J Flint penned this,
    He giveth more grace as our burdens grow greater,
    He sendeth more strength as our labors increase;
    To added afflictions He addeth His mercy,
    To multiplied trials He multiplies peace.
    When we have exhausted our store of endurance,
    When our strength has failed ere the day is half done,
    When we reach the end of our hoarded resources
    Our Father’s full giving is only begun.
    Fear not that thy need shall exceed His provision,
    Our God ever yearns His resources to share;
    Lean hard on the arm everlasting, availing;
    The Father both thee and thy load will upbear.
    His love has no limits, His grace has no measure,
    His power no boundary known unto men;
    For out of His infinite riches in Jesus
    He giveth, and giveth, and giveth again.

    I was reminded of this song when I read your post.
    Tearfully I pray for rest for you and your mother.

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  7. He giveth more grace as our burdens grow greater,
    He sendeth more strength as our labors increase;
    To added afflictions He addeth His mercy,
    To multiplied trials He multiplies peace.
    When we have exhausted our store of endurance,
    When our strength has failed ere the day is half done,
    When we reach the end of our hoarded resources
    Our Father’s full giving is only begun.
    Fear not that thy need shall exceed His provision,
    Our God ever yearns His resources to share;
    Lean hard on the arm everlasting, availing;
    The Father both thee and thy load will upbear.
    His love has no limits, His grace has no measure,
    His power no boundary known unto men;
    For out of His infinite riches in Jesus
    He giveth, and giveth, and giveth again.

    Praying for rest for you and your mother.

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  8. Oh Anna this sounds so terrible And yet so wonderful – it doesn’t seem possible ! I will continue to pray for all of you ! Praying that your new placement will be perfect for Katy and all of you ! God bless you !!!!

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  9. Dear Anna,
    What a moving description of your transition and the night. Reminded me of a 2 year time in our lives when we experienced the description of St. John of the Cross…the dark night of the soul. This is the verse that kept me moving forward. Psalm 30:5 For His anger is but for a moment, His favor is for a lifetime; Weeping may last for the night, But a shout of joy comes in the morning.
    Blessings and prayers.
    Randy & Bernadette Vinson

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  10. It is well, it is well with my soul. Dear sweet girl, you are loved by a great God and dear parents and siblings…be strong in the Lord… One day you’ll look back and see how God makes all things work together for good.. even our pain and tears …. and “help!” when that’s all we can say at the time of need. Thank you for being there to support your dear Dad and Mom..they are loved and cared for because of your love and we are for keeping us informed… with tresparency.

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  11. Oh how I hurt for you all! Praying that last night was the “bottom” and that today starts a journey to the “top”!
    Love to all,
    Kathy

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  12. Dear Anna, Stan and Katy, I read your post late last night and we prayed for you. Today, the last day of January 2016, found me reading Amy Carmichael’s devotional in EDGES OF HIS WAYS and here is the last paragraph: ” Ye have not passed this way heretofore. This is a new day for you, but He who loves you meets you at the gate of the day, and at the gate of the new month, and He says, “Fear not, the Lord will give you strength, the Lord will bless you with peace.” Psalm 29:11

    Praying, Rev. Gail and Judy McQueen

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    1. Praying nights will be shorter and less dark and mornings will come brighter and with hope restored for that new day, where mercies abound. “Mercy drops for us are falling, but for the showers we plead>”

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    2. Though my heart and flesh are weak TheLORD is my strength and my portion forever….not a perfect quote but this is what gives me strength and comfort in grief. I pray for you all every day. The I AM is our strength and portion!

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  13. My heart aches. Prayed yesterday knowing the transition, again, wouldn’t be easy. Father, reveal yourself in deeper ways! Ps. 145:17-21. You are loved.

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  14. Were can I/we send cards to your Mom? What is the mailing address?

    Yes! Yes! Yes! He gives us a Song in the Night just like He did for Paul & Silas (Acts 16) and for you!

    “His Strength Is Perfect” STEVEN CURTIS CHAPMAN LYRICS

    Usage of azlyrics.com content by any third-party lyrics provider is prohibited by our licensing agreement. Sorry about that. I can do all things Through Christ who gives me strength But sometimes I wonder what He can do through me No great success to show No glory on my own Yet in my weakness He is there to let me know

    His strength is perfect when our strength is gone He’ll carry us when we can’t carry on Raised in His power, the weak become strong His strength is perfect, His strength is perfect

    We can only know The power that He holds When we truly see how deep our weakness goes His strength in us begins Where ours comes to an end He hears our humble cry and proves again

    His strength is perfect when our strength is gone He’ll carry us when we can’t carry on Raised in His power, the weak become strong His strength is perfect, His strength is perfect

    >

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  15. Thank you, Anna, for sharing your heart and soul! It is hard to imagine even a glimpse what you must go through. Praying for all of you, especially, for your Mom. Reading such posts remind me reading the Book of Job. May Gracious God grants you endurance, strengths and mercy to go through such pain and suffering. “But he knows the way that I take; when he has tested me, I will come forth as gold.” (Job 23:10 NIV).
    Love you all! Blessings!

    Tatyana

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  16. Anna, your honesty is a a challenge to us as we continue to pray that God should indwell your weakness, especially that of mom. Miriam and I are groaning for mom and dad. they say it does rain but pours however, like you say he indeed carries us not only when we struggle but always May his grace be sufficient for you. praying

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  17. If love and concern could lift you up, you would now be floating above the earth — because of the tremendous love and concern we all are sending to you and your dear parents. I’m sorry it does not work this way. But you can be assured we are praying with concern and love.

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  18. Unfortunately, your experience is typical in cases like this. Our health care situation certainly lacks something. Things like this shouldn’t have to be typical. The patient and family already has enough to cope with. Thank God for His help!

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  19. Dearest Anna,
    You and your family are an inspiration to us all.
    Our love and prayers are with you. May our
    Mighty God hold you ever so tightly and each
    Sunrise bring better days!
    Love in Christ,
    Lynn Gardner

    Like

  20. He giveth more grace as our burdens grow greater,
    He sendeth more strength as our labors increase;
    To added afflictions He addeth His mercy,
    To multiplied trials He multiplies peace.
    When we have exhausted our store of endurance,
    When our strength has failed ere the day is half done,
    When we reach the end of our hoarded resources
    Our Father’s full giving is only begun.
    Fear not that thy need shall exceed His provision,
    Our God ever yearns His resources to share;
    Lean hard on the arm everlasting, availing;
    The Father both thee and thy load will upbear.
    His love has no limits, His grace has no measure,
    His power no boundary known unto men;
    For out of His infinite riches in Jesus
    He giveth, and giveth, and giveth again.

    This song ministers to me and hopefully bless you also.

    Like

  21. Dear Anna,
    How hard it must be to see your mom going through this! As I head to bed here on Germany, my thoughts and prayers are for you and your family. May your strength and hope be renewed each day.

    Lori

    Like

  22. Anna and family…Dick and I are praying fervently for a breakthrough for you all. I had my hubby in the ER last week, for just one day, and that day exhausted us and made me realize how utterly wiped out you must be. I know there are lessons to be learned through pain and suffering but my human side says there must be an easier way to learn those lessons. Hang in there, dear ones! There are multitudes of people holding you up in prayer these days. There is “victory in Jesus”! May it come soon….loving you….jean (and dick) bisnett

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  23. Anna, 8 years ago tonight, I started a similar journey with my dad. My thoughts and prayers are still with your mom, dad, and all of you. I’m glad you feel you can be so honest about how you are feeling too.

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  24. We continue to pray for you. Our hearts are heavy as we carry each other’s burdens, but we rejoice in our Creator who has not left us. May you feel and see a special touch from Him today.

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  25. A friend of a friend of your family from NY. Know you are in so many prayer lists out here in Colorado. He is our great physician. Climb onto his lap and let him hold you through these troubling days and nights. He is the King of Peace.

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