Friday, June 13, 2008

Like a Weaned Child

Yesterday as I was changing Elias' diaper trying to get him to wake up to finish a feeding, he did wake up, realized he was still hungry, and started screaming his head off. This is not an unusual occurrence. However, this particular time, a Psalm popped into my head:

Psalm 131

1 O LORD, my heart is not lifted up;
my eyes are not raised too high;
I do not occupy myself with things
too great and too marvelous for me.
2 But I have calmed and quieted my soul,
like a weaned child with its mother;
like a weaned child is my soul within me.

3 O Israel, hope in the LORD
from this time forth and forevermore.

A child who is still nursing doesn't understand delayed gratification. If he's hungry, he screams until he is satisfied. For the most part, a child who has been weaned can sit patiently and wait for his mother to bring food. And this is how we should be with God. Like weaned children, we wait patiently for the Lord to bring us what He knows we need. Crying and fussing over not receiving answers to our prayers just shows our immaturity, that we are still nursing infants.

This is VERY applicable to me right now, and the more I think about it the more I need this lesson. I didn't realize until yesterday just how hurt and angry I am at God for the way He has made us wait so long for answers to our prayers, and for the way He is still making us wait. I just don't understand why we had to spend more than 8 long, frustrating months looking for a job before God came through. And we are thankful that He did and we praise Him for the perfect situation. But why make us suffer so long?

And now the need feels even more urgent for me as we wait for Him to come through with Eli's feeding and weight gain. We had him weighed yesterday and he is still gaining, but slowly. He's more than 3 weeks old and still not back up to his birth weight. This terrifies me for his health, and it also makes me angry. We have prayed and trusted God for Eli's health, and we are doing everything we possibly can to help him be healthy. So why is God withholding the answer to this prayer? I believe that He will come through, but what is the purpose of the long struggle while we wait?

I know that God's Word says that He is good in everything He does. He is loving, gracious, and compassionate, and He promises that all things in the lives of His children will work out for good. He also says that He does not act without a purpose, and He never allows difficulties into His children's lives just out of spite or for fun. So I know He has a purpose in this and that purpose is good, even though I may never know what that purpose is.

But I'm still really struggling with it, especially when we're in the middle of a feeding and Elias just won't wake up to eat. I pray and beg God continually - please, help him eat! And it feels like God just won't answer. I don't know why and I am really having a hard time letting it go and trusting God with Eli's life and health. So I just ask for your prayers. Please pray that God will indeed answer our prayers and that Elias will wake up and learn how to eat well and that he will gain weight! And please pray that in the meantime I will be able to let go of my anger and instead calm and quiet my soul like a weaned child.


KarenD said...

Thanks for your prayers. I'm praying for you, too.

Mollie said...

Joni, once again your honesty is a blessing. Thank you for being transparent with where you are right now!!! We'll be praying for little Elias and that he will start eating well and gaining weight and that your heart can rest in the Lord in the meantime. We love you guys!!