When Your Prayers Don't Make It Past the Ceiling


The last few months have been hard for me. 

When we suffered the miscarriage of twins back in May, I spent a lot of time angry at God. In truth, I don't know that I ever fully recovered from my c-section with Little Bear over a year ago. 

You see, back then I desperately wanted to go into labor on our own. I didn't want a c-section. I knew it was within God's power to send me into labor and deliver a healthy baby, but He didn't. Instead I ended up with a crazy induction story and an emergency c-section. I was convinced it was because God choose not to answer my prayer. 

Then just a few short months ago I pleaded with God to give us two healthy babies. I'd only known they existed for a few short days before we lost the first baby. It just felt pointless. Then we lost the second baby only a week later. It felt like my prayers never made it past the ceiling. God simply wasn't listening to me. 

So I just stopped talking to Him. 

I avoided my Bible. I never let my house get quiet. I didn't even talk to my husband about what I was feeling. I just wanted to keep myself so busy I didn't have time to grieve. 

It wasn't that I lost my faith. I just lost the relationship. I trusted God. I just didn't want to talk with Him about it. 

But the Holy Spirit was relentless (my husband is also kind of persistent when he needs to be). 

And instead of hiding out in a cave far away from every care in the world (which is what I really wanted to do), I found myself taking refuge in the Psalms. 

I read some of them over and over again. Some days I didn't feel anything. I just read them because I was supposed to. 

But over the course of a few weeks those words of comfort became a lifeline. 

Psalm 121 became one of my favorites. 

It is a Psalm of assent, a song that the Israelites would sing on the journey to Jerusalem. It's the story of a man traveling through the desert, and how God protects him, guides him, and keeps him along his journey. 

What a comfort it must have been to the people of Israel on those long weary days spent traveling. A reminder that God was with them even as the sun beat down upon their heads and their feet stumbled on hidden stones. 

And what a comfort it was to me on this journey of faith, as dry and hot as it may be sometimes. God is with me and He is guiding my path and protecting my steps. 

"I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help. My help cometh from the LORD, which made heaven and earth." Psalm 121:1-2
Our help is found in looking up to see our Creator God, not in focusing on the dry valley we are walking through. 
"He will not suffer thy foot to be moved: he that keepeth thee will not slumber. Behold, he that keepeth Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep." Psalm 121:3-4
We can rest when we are tired because our God never sleeps. His protection and provision are constant, even when we are weary. 
"The LORD is thy keeper: the LORD is thy shade upon thy right hand. The sun shall not smite thee by day, nor the moon by night." Psalm 121:5-6
The Lord is always protecting us, covering us like a shadow. He protects us from the circumstances around us, in this case the sun and the moon, but also the circumstances of this world that would threaten to overtake us. 
"The LORD shall preserve thee from all evil: he shall preserve thy soul. The LORD shall preserve thy going out and thy coming in from this time forth, and even for evermore." Psalm 121:7-8
The Lord will protect us from the enemy, and he will preserve our soul. He will preserve our faith, now and always. 

These verses became my prayer, my focus. I needed the reminder to look up. I began to focus on what God had already given me rather than those things He took away. 

It wasn't a quick fix. I still have a ton of questions. There are still things I just don't understand about the nature of prayer. 

But I'm not going to run from those feelings and doubts. I'm going to take them to the God who created the universe. The God who created me. The God who loved me enough to die for me. 

And I'm going to trust that He is good and His love is never failing.

*I've recently created a set of scripture cards highlight some of my favorite verses in the Psalms about the character of God. These verses remind me of all the good things God has done for me, and how I need to praise Him for who He is, not for what may or may not give me in this life. 

The images above are a part of that set. You can find full set of cards here. I would love to share them with you, and I pray you can use these scriptures to encourage someone in your life who may be going through a hard time. 



1 comment:

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