The Suburb Woman
What If The Trials Are His Mercies In Disguise
Posted on October 7th, 2015

​Two years ago today, Michael underwent surgery at MD Anderson to remove a small, but malignant brain tumor. We learned from pathology reports it was an incurable grade four cancer. His diagnosis was "terminal" and life expectancy was 18-24 months. Sitting alone in ICU with him that day, in so many ways, it felt like the diagnosis and prognosis for my sweet little family as well.

A year ago, we were enjoying what would be our last trip together. It was poignant those days were spent on Cape Breton Island in the company of friends. While our time was unencumbered by treatment and doctor visits, I knew in my heart it might very well be the last moments to feel that way… 12 months had passed.

Today, Michael has been celebrating in heaven for four months the gift of his salvation and freedom from a physical body that failed him. We are living and surviving what I feared would be an unsurvivable loss. We feel more happiness than sadness and more hope that despair. Prayer is powerful and God is good.

October has played a significant role in my life the past 14 years. It is the month we met, the month we got married, the month that ushers in my favorite time of year, the month we always traveled, and the month that changed our lives forever. It’s ironic, even now, how special this month is becoming in my path forward too.

In 2013, I posted the words of a song called “Blessings” by Laura Story I listened to continually at that time. The main question was, “What if the trials of this life are His mercy in disguise?” It was meaningful the singer/songwriter composed the song as a result of her husband being diagnosed with a brain tumor. However, I couldn’t fully embrace how any trial I faced then or over the coming months could be remotely considered a mercy.

While visiting my favorite local coffee shop on Monday this week, I saw a friend I haven’t seen much in the past couple of years. He immediately began to tell me how by sharing my story – the struggles, the doubts, the pain and the grief – inspired him to embrace the recent news of being laid off from his job with enthusiasm that God has something bigger in mind for him. Wow! I was speechless. I coupled his story with another friend telling me a few weeks ago she had turned in her resignation for a job she loved because her priorities had shifted to focus on her marriage and three-year-old daughter. As a result of taking that bold step when considering how quickly time passes us by, she got to keep her job and create a schedule that allowed her to accomplish her balance.

In addition to praying for strength and comfort, I constantly prayed the pain would not be wasted and God would keep His promise to make all things new. It’s almost overwhelming at times to witness all He is doing in my life right now that could only come from Him. It’s comforting and encouraging to hear from others that my openness and honesty through writing challenges and ministers to them. I truly believe with God nothing is wasted if we surrender it to Him.

I also embrace the message of “Blessings” more wholeheartedly and in a spirit of joy today than the desperation I felt two years ago. And what I wish I could tell myself then with the knowledge and experience I have today is this; “Yes Lori, the trials of this life is God’s mercy if you will open your heart to the great work He wants to do in you.”

BLESSINGS

We pray for blessings, we pray for peace
Comfort for family, protection while we sleep
We pray for healing, for prosperity
We pray for Your mighty hand to ease our suffering
And all the while, You hear each spoken need
Yet love is way too much to give us lesser things

'Cause what if your blessings come through rain drops
What if Your healing comes through tears
What if a thousand sleepless nights are what it takes to know You're near
What if trials of this life are Your mercies in disguise

We pray for wisdom, Your voice to hear
We cry in anger when we cannot feel You near
We doubt your goodness, we doubt your love
As if every promise from Your word is not enough
And all the while, You hear each desperate plea
And long that we'd have faith to believe

'Cause what if your blessings come through rain drops
What if Your healing comes through tears
What if a thousand sleepless nights are what it takes to know You're near
What if trials of this life are Your mercies in disguise

When friends betray us
When darkness seems to win
We know that pain reminds this heart
That this is not,
This is not our home
It's not our home

'Cause what if your blessings come through rain drops
What if Your healing comes through tears
What if a thousand sleepless nights are what it takes to know You're near

What if my greatest disappointments or the aching of this life
Is the revealing of a greater thirst this world can't satisfy
What if trials of this life
The rain, the storms, the hardest nights
Are your mercies in disguise


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