oh no...not today!!
Though now I am years out of school, yesterday I felt that same panicky-pop-quiz-feeling. A few days ago, while in revival, my sisters were running and playing and my youngest sister tripped and fell. Like all kids do, she said "Ow!" and got up and continued to play. The following day, however, she began to complain about her left leg hurting. She started having pain when she walked. Then she started crying when she had to move her leg. Yesterday, my parents brought her to the doctor. After lab work, tests, and Xrays, he sent her to Children's Hospital.
NOBODY likes hearing that their little girl (or in my case, little sister) has to be sent to professionals because of some unknown problem. It is scary. It is heart wrenching. It is the panicky-pop-quiz-feeling, times ten. I was out running errands, grocery shopping, and taking Nathan to his nine-month check up when I got the call that my baby sister was headed to Children's. When I got off the phone, as I drove home, I tried to stay calm and swallow the lump in my throat. All the common "what if's" were going through my mind:
What if it's something really bad?
What if she has to have surgery?
What if it's a disease?
What if it's cancer?
What if God takes her home??
As he usually does, Satan will take any chance he can get to flood our minds with the worse possible scenarios. He WANTS us to live in fear. He WANTS us to be in tormented while facing the unknown. He wants us to be kept down. And as I'm sure he did with my parents, he did a number on me.
I started praying and then, as ashamed as I am to admit it, I found myself doubting if God would even answer my prayers. But I love that no matter how many times I question the faithfulness of the Lord, and how many times I fail this test or that test, He continues to teach me that YES, He IS listening. YES, He is in control. YES, all things will work together for good.
By the time I got home, I had a peace. I asked the Lord to help me stay calm through this test. I asked Him to dry my clammy hands so I can hold on to the pencil. I asked Him to bring peace to my parents and my family. Through this "pop quiz" (and, indeed, it is a definite out-of-nowhere pop quiz), I want to have faith. In life, it is certain that we WILL be surprised with a sudden test that will challenge our faith. Sometimes, like the Lord did with Abraham, He simply wants to know if we are willing to obey Him. Sometimes, He wants to teach us more about Him and His sovereignty. Sometimes, He wants our attention. Sometimes, He wants to show us that He is truly all we need.
I don't want to fail those tests. I don't want be so afraid that I miss out on what He wants me to learn.
As of now, we still don't have any answers. My little sis had a long night, full of poking and prodding. IVs, Xrays, blood work, scans. She is scheduled to have an MRI done today. We have no idea what this afternoon holds....or what tomorrow holds....we don't know when another "pop quiz" will be pulled out and placed in front of us. BUT we do know that our Great Teacher has only the best in store. We know that He only wants to mature us, strengthen us, grow us up in the faith, and fill us with more knowledge of Himself.
Please be praying for my family. And I hope you will join me in praying that when God says, "It's time for another pop quiz," we will all say, in faith and with blind trust, "BRING IT!"
The LORD also will be a refuge for the oppressed, a refuge in times of trouble. And they that know thy name will put their trust in thee: for thou, LORD, hast not forsaken them that seek thee.
I will say of the LORD, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust. Surely he shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler, and from the noisome pestilence. He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust: his truth shall be thy shield and buckler. Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night; nor for the arrow that flieth by day; Nor for the pestilence that walketh in darkness; nor for the destruction that wasteth at noonday.
Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee. Trust ye in the LORD for ever: for in the LORD JEHOVAH is everlasting strength.