Tuesday, August 23, 2011

"We Encourage" with Laura

Today's "we encourage" post is coming to you from Laura at Splendor. I asked her to guest post because I want to encourage her to keep doin what she's doin. She is a beautiful sister in Christ who writes openly and honestly on her blog. Thanks for hosting Laura! You are a true treasure. I'm thankful to call you friend!
PS: She also makes AMAZING jewelry! Go check out the Splendor Shop.

Grab a button and link up, then go leave some love to encourage others!

We went swimming a lot this summer. By the end of the summer, the kids had become little fishes. Bella still needed her floaties on, not 100% sure of how to swim without them. She got used to them being on. They were her security.

One afternoon, after we'd been swimming for a while, we got out of the pool to grab a snack. Mia was fussy so I turned my attention to feed her. I looked up to check in on Bella. In a split second, I realized Bella had walked down the stairs of the pool and into the water without her floaties on. She was kicking her little feet as fast they could go, not able to reach the bottom. Gasping as she struggled to keep her head above water. It felt like my body wouldn't move fast enough to get to her. My mind racing, my mouth yelling out to her, but my body wasn't going fast enough. I jumped in the water and grabbed her. She was shaken up, but fine. I held her and told her it was ok. I wrapped her in a towel and sat her on my lap as she calmed down.

She was quiet.

A few minutes later, she asked me, "Mommy, why didn't Jesus pick me up out of the water?"

I told her he did. Cause mommy was there and saw her quick enough to get her out of the water before anything happened. That her angels were protecting her and helped mommy see her.

Later that night, after I tucked her in bed, she asked me that question again. Wondering why she didn't see Jesus protecting her. I reminded her that her angels and Jesus are always watching over her and keeping her safe, even though she can't see them. That they did save her. Even though it didn't happen the way she thought it should. They did protect her.

I loved that she asked that question. I loved that she challenged what I've always taught her…that God will always be with her and protect her.

She's only 3 years old. She doesn't fully understand the concept that even though we can't always see God in situations, and even though things don't happen the way we think they should, He's there. Protecting us, guiding us, directing and loving us. Always with the best for us in mind.

But I think a lot of us still don't understand that concept. We wonder why bad things happen to good people. We wonder why He doesn't answer a prayer right away or in the way we  think He should. We think maybe He's not listening. We wonder, maybe we did something wrong. Something to deserve the bad. The trials. The struggles.

I once had a friend ask me if I thought that what has happened to me, losing my 2 sweet girls at 20 and 24 weeks, was because of something I had done. She wasn't accusing. She wasn't implying. She was honestly seeking answers. Grasping for logic. Why bad things happen to good people.

I was happy she asked me that question. I was happy to tell her what I believed, because it's come from deep conversations with God. Some real searching.

For some reason I think we're quick to place blame. On ourselves. Our actions. Decisions. Whatever it is. We think it must be something we did. We must have deserved it. We pray so hard for a certain outcome. A job. Healing. A baby.

It didn't happen the way we thought it would or when we thought it should. We must not have deserved it.

But I don't think that is true. I think….no I know, that I serve a God who loves us. Who wants only the best for us. I did battle with questions and accusations after I lost our babies. It was almost easier to grasp the first time we lost a baby, Grace Anne. We could believe the Dr.'s term of calling it a "fluke"-- something that just happened with no real apparent reason. We could blame it on chromosomal abnormalities. On her being sick. That was a little easier to take. 

But when it happened again, when we lost Faith Marie. That was hard. Heart breaking. Earth shattering. It rocked my world. My ideas, thoughts, and perceptions of everything I'd ever been taught.

I had to ask God some very real questions. And I had to get some real answers. I knew deep down, that it wasn't anything I did. That I didn't deserve any of it. That we live in a fallen world with loss, tragedy and suffering. That there is an enemy who comes to steal, kill and destroy.

I knew these things. But I think God still wanted me to ask the questions. I think he wants us to dig deeper. Not to settle on the cliche's or general answers that we've been taught all of our lives. To challenge them. To challenge Him. 

Because thats when our relationships get deeper. Stronger. We have a real, personal understanding of God and who He is. A loving God. Who doesn't do things to us to teach us lessons. Who doesn't take or withhold good things from us. Thats not the God I know and serve. And with that knowledge, I'm OK with not knowing the answers. Not know fully understanding the "why's."

Because in my seeking, I found something more priceless than any answer I could have received. 
That only comes from knowing Him. Truly knowing Him.

I hope Bella doesn't settle for the answers I gave her. I hope as she grows, she continues to challenge them. That she matches up the word to them. Seeks and finds them on her own. Because I know that is when she will fully know that even when we don't feel him lifting us up out of our struggles, He's there. And He always will be.


Much Love, 
Laura Caddell



Breeann said...

Beautiful post, Laura. I needed to hear this today :)

Kelly said...

laura...this is beautiful.
jami...i love you.

Ashley said...

amazing... just amazing.


Heather from wearetheholdens.blogspot.com said...

Laura... such goodness here. All truth.. love it and you.

Megan said...

Great post as always Laura. I had a scare once in the water with my son when he was small. I thank God for protecting our littles.

hannah singer said...

oh, laura. TRUTH.
thanks for sharing this with us today. xo

katie said...

First, I have to tell you that my heart aches for your loss. Second, we have had some crazy things happen to us in the last 12 years. People always ask me how I still have faith and how God allows bad things to happen. I always say the same thing. We have a good Good despite bad circumstances. Beautiful post.

theolivetree said...

great guest post!

Karen said...

That was a beautiful post. God is amazing!

Alyss said...

Wow Laura. Inspiring. I'm so sorry about the circumstances behind your soul searching, but so happy with where you are on the other end of things. The fact that your daughter is already asking those things is proof that you are raising her up in the Word. Thank you so much for sharing today.

Anonymous said...

That was absolutely beautiful! And so right on. So glad to read this first thing in the morning. <3

Luisa Rodríguez said...

Beautiful post; comforting words...


JessicaLynn said...

This post is beautiful and really shows how strong god is in your life for your daughter to ask you about something like that at such a young age. I hope my boys have as great of an understanding as she does

Kristy said...

Lovely idea! Happy to have found your blog today! :)

Erica said...

Wow! I loved your post today! Isn't it amazing how God comforts us when we go through difficult times and we then can use that comfort to encourage others once we've healed? Keep up the encouragement! This world needs your words.

Heather said...

What a beautiful post!

Anonymous said...

laura...you are beautiful inside and out. thank you for sharing your heart and encouraging us to just cling to Jesus.

Simplistic Beauty said...

Thanks for letting Laura share this Jami!!! I am a new follower of yours! plus I follow laura! You both have inspired me to shine a light for christ with my blog! I am glad I found you both!

adventures with 4 under 4 said...

awesome post! and so full of encouragement & blessings. i'm a new follower and love this tuesday link up. i'm all for spreading the testimony of God's goodness.

Amanda said...

I love Laura! This post was amazing!

Vanessa said...


Just found your blog and your story made me cry. We get so busy and forgot God is always with us. I love what one of my professor in Bible school told us one day in class, he told us "Faith is simply believing." We can see Him, but He is always ever present God!

God Bless you and your family!

Thank you for sharing your story.


Flor said...

beautiful post. you are such an inspiration.. thank you for sharing <3