It was a beautiful, warm and sunny Sunday afternoon, so we went for a walk in the woods with Josh, Sarah and the kids. About halfway through I noticed that one of my hearing aids was missing. Instantly I realized what had happened: I’d been carrying little Kenan on my shoulders, and when I put him on or took him off, the hearing aid was dislodged. It had fallen off that point, or somewhat later.
My first reaction was natural, “Oh no!” But the Holy Spirit immediately prompted me to offer the sacrifice of thanksgiving, “Thank you, Lord, for allowing this. I pray that you’ll help me to find it, as you know where it is.” I then retraced the several hundred yards we’d covered, looking carefully for the missing item, but no success.
As I was searching, the Spirit reminded me of how our car in had been stolen shortly before we moved to Germany in 2009. I had looked for that, too, but did not find it. We’d hoped to sell it and buy a car in Germany, but, as you may remember, the Lord had something much greater in mind for us.
He not only supplied a car through our new friends, Dr. Chris and Melanie, but they paid for the insurance, taxes, repairs and all our fuel for the whole 3.5 years we were there! But much more importantly, He gave opportunity to share the gospel with Dr. Chris, answering his questions so that near the end of our time there, he came to Christ. That was certainly worth losing my 15-year-old rusty car! So what does God have in store through this loss? We shall see!
I returned to join my family, again looking carefully as I retraced my steps and then we all looked again as we walked back home–but no hearing aid. I returned later in the afternoon with a magnetic stick and swept through the leaves, but nothing. The next morning I brought a young friend who is really good at finding things—but again nothing.
Each of these searches was another chance to trust God in praise. He certainly knows where that hearing aid is, but has chosen not to show me. I don’t know what He intends to do with this, but I can trust Him to know and to reveal it at the right time.
It is so good to relax in His love, to let go of what is temporal (it belonged to God anyway), to hold on to the truth of His goodness and grace, and to rise above the situation.
As it says in Hebrews 12:1-2, remembering that I am surrounded by a cloud of witnesses, I am told to lay aside every weight (loss) and the sin that so easily entangles me (worry, fretting, anger) and run with patience and perseverance the race He as set before me, looking to Jesus (not to people, possessions or success), the Author and Finisher of my faith (He will carry me through).
Like Him, for the joy set before me (of being His child, of having Him as my Shepherd, of His protection and provision, of a certain future, of spending eternity with Him), I can endure whatever cross may come and despise whatever shame I may feel (for my failure and weakness), knowing that I will be set down in heaven with Him.
What a freeing, empowering perspective! I encourage you to pray that passage for yourself every day for a month and see what God does! And I will wait to see His further purposes in this adventure of loss.