By Kristi Hall

I remember those words…“This is not good”.  I was 17 weeks pregnant and having an ultrasound. We were excited to see if we were having a boy or girl. She, the nurse, uttered those words and left the room. I didn’t understand and fear gripped the very deepest part of me. How could this not be good? What was wrong? I’ll save this for the end…

Are you in the middle of a “this is not good?” What does that look like for you? You may be struggling with a rebellious child or teenager, a complicated pregnancy, a baby who won’t sleep through the night, toddler issues, one who cries to go to school, a child being bullied by another, or the one doing the bullying, a sickness or disease, a broken heart, a sad teenager who struggles with his/her self-worth, there are countless scenarios. And right there in the middle of the brokenness you hear the voice from the enemy who’s telling you that all THIS — this crazy, ugly, hurtful MESS is just not good. You wonder where God is. You beg Him to help. Sometimes He’s quiet and the weight seems too heavy, too big.

I couldn’t help but think of His words from the first few chapters of Genesis. God made, and He said that it was good. He created, and said that it was good.

One thing we can be certain of is God’s sovereignty and His power. “And we know God causes all things to work together for good to those who are called according to his purpose.” Romans 8:28

You, nor I will never understand the ways of God. There are and will be many things that do not seem good. Sadness, grief and despair have touched so precious many. I am reminded that “the secret things belong to the Lord.” Deuteronomy 29:29

My heart for you today is not to attempt to explain it, but finding Him in the middle of it. The undeniable hope, love and peace that ONLY He can provide. Nothing else compares… just Jesus!

There is hope in the name of Jesus! There is victory in the name of Jesus! There is healing in the name of Jesus! There is power in the name of Jesus!!

These words have ministered to my heart most recently.

Hope.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        “So be truly glad. There is wonderful joy ahead, even though you must endure many trials for a little while. These trials will show that your faith is genuine. It is being tested as fire tests and purifies gold—though your faith is far more precious than mere gold. So when your faith remains strong through many trials, it will bring you much praise and glory and honor on the day when Jesus Christ is revealed to the whole world.                                                                        I Peter 1:6-7

I love the period that comes right after “glad.” It’s a pause to stop and grab hold of hope for there is JOY coming!!

Believing (a choice on our part)                                                                                                                                                                                                                       Jesus responded, “Didn’t I tell you that you would see God’s glory if you believe?”                                                                                                                                         John 11:40

Claiming (and my life verse!)                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     “Now unto Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all we could ask or think…” Ephesians 3:20

Praise                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Praising Him for being Jehovah Nissi- The Lord my Banner.                                                                                                                                                                        “The Lord will fight for me while I am silent” Exodus 14:14                                                                                                                                                                                “I am your shield and very great reward..” Genesis 15:1

I didn’t see good that day in 2003.

Every little thing looked bleak and scary. I had extremely low amniotic fluid and was told the child I was carrying would be one of two scenarios:

  1. Death prior to 24 weeks resulting in a stillborn delivery.
  2. A child with severe abnormalities both mentally and physically, with mangled limbs who would never walk

I remember the yellow piece of paper passed across the desk with the words, “I’m sorry, there is no hope.”

I was numb.

The next words came from my husband, strong and with the upmost control, “Doctor, God has given us the child, abortion is not an option.” I was instructed to drink 4 quarts of water a day, for the remainder of my pregnancy while on complete bed rest.

Hard.

Caleb was born six weeks early. I marvel just writing this. I can still hear his cry. Neither scenario presented itself. The only thing “wrong” was a hyperextended leg that needed therapy. He was in the NICU for a few weeks to strengthen his lungs and heart. He was our miracle! This was good! He will be a freshman in high school next month carrying with him a 4.0 gpa. He enjoys most sports and is a born leader, a fighter! I praise God for HIS goodness!

Sweet Mama, I know you may be hurting, sad, anxious, confused and quite honestly flat worn out, but if I could sit with you over a cup of coffee I would say this with all my heart. In the times where things have looked less than good, He is there, right in the middle. I know of His faithfulness and His comfort. I have felt His very presence more than once. He will never leave you.. God is good. He is my strength when I have been weak. Trust Him…in every little thing. Pray hard, daily, and lean in on Him.

Beth Moore sums it up so beautifully:

“Life is brutal.

And beautiful.

And harsh.

And holy.

Jesus is at all times good. He is at all times life, truth, love, light.

He is the way and the way-maker.

He is at all times near, especially to the brokenhearted.

He is joy in tribulation.

He is Immanuel.

He is God with us.”

Experience His goodness!                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Kristi Hall                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  ~mother of three

Jodie Frye

Jodie and her husband, Eric, have been married for almost 20 years and live in Alabama. They have twin boys currently in high school and one in middle school. Being a mom of all boys (for a girl who needs her quiet space), has been a place of deep refining, surrender, and blessing for Jodie. Along with her husband, she is the co-founder of Altar84, a non-profit devoted to caring for the orphan by fostering gospel-centered change through the local church.

Jodie is a word-girl at heart, who loves writing her way through the messy-beautiful of life. She longs to encourage and inspire women in grace + Truth and in friendship with Jesus.

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