When Life Takes Unexpected Turns

Life has a way of taking us down unexpected turns at times. For the past five weeks, my family’s life has been a whirlwind of emotions as we celebrated the birth of our fifth child. The excitement of our little boy making his entrance into this world quickly turned to a full range of emotions as he has spent the past five weeks in the NICU. Originally it looked like he would be able to come home at the same time as his mom, but that hope evaporated. The following are some excerpts from my personal journal that I would like to share with you:

May 19, 2019

Lord, today marks the first day home from the hospital without Aaron…I cannot fathom the emotions that Megan is dealing with on a constant basis…Through everything I have remained strong in appearance but inward I am struggling…Help me to share my pain and suffering with the right people You have placed in my life…You have surrounded Aaron since birth giving him strength to be strong in development…Lord, help me.

May 26, 2019

Lord, today is the first Sunday that I am back preaching…Lord, you know how I am struggling. I trust You are taking care of my son. Help me stay close to You as Megan and I run on empty most days…Help me to show Jesus to those that are caring for Aaron…I know that You can heal my son.

Life took a very unexpected turn. This is not what we had hoped for or planned for in the life of our little one. As we move on still with many more questions than answers, I find hope in relating to Jeremiah the prophet. His life took many unexpected turns in that he had to endure great hardship for most of his ministry. He experienced first hand the hardships the people of Jerusalem lived after the destruction of the city.

I would encourage you to read the book of Lamentations. This is Jeremiah’s poetical depiction of how difficult life in Jerusalem became. He outlines the struggles of the people along with his personal feelings. As you read through this you find that right at the climax of his pain and sorrow that he writes the following:

Remember my affliction and my wanderings, the wormwood and the gall! My soul continually remembers it and is bowed down within me. But this I call to mind, and therefore I have hope: The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. “The Lord is my portion,” says my soul, “therefore I will hope in him.”(Lamentations 3:19–24)

When life takes those unexpected turns, take hope in knowing God’s love never changes. I’m not saying that knowing this makes things easier. Grief is messy. Stress can be painful. Sometimes it will be hard to understand where God is in the situation that you are going through. Believe me, I’m living it. But even though there are many more questions than answers, I know and believe that God knows what is coming next. I know that I cannot handle what is going on in my own strength. The cool thing about God is that He doesn’t expect us to. Jesus tells us:

Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” (Matthew 11:28–30)

When life takes you down those unexpected turns and you feel that you cannot go on, then stop trying to do it by yourself and truly let God take the situation. Stop trying to live life in your own strength and let God handle the situation. Remember what the apostle Paul wrote regarding his ongoing struggle:

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong. (2 Corinthians 12:9–10)

Pressing on Towards Heaven,

Pastor Ryan


One Response to “When Life Takes Unexpected Turns”

  1. Charlene Cashatt says:

    I have been volunteering at our Baptist Center, Casa De Amour, since Jan. 5, 2005. We have always gathered before 9am for prayer. Baby Aaron has been prayed for every MTW from the beginning of his precious life. I give an update every Monday morning. I, along with others keep him in our daily prayers.


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