Monday, July 7, 2008

My testimony

Surely, O God, you have worn me out; you have devastated my entire household…My days have passed, my plans are shattered, and so are the desires of my heart. —Job 17:11

My church asked for testimonies, and I refrained for awhile from writing mine. In many ways I wonder, what do I have to offer? What is my testimony? Eight years ago this June—after a 3-year battle to find answers for my husband’s headaches, confusion, chemical sensitivities, memory loss, joint pain, anxiety and depression—Dave had to leave his position as children’s pastor at our church. Eight years of praying for Dave’s healing—have our tears fallen on deaf ears?

“How long, O LORD? Will you forget me forever?How long will you hide your face from me?How long must I wrestle with my thoughtsand every day have sorrow in my heart?How long will my enemy triumph over me?” —Ps 13:1-2
The God who sees, who hears, who—dare I say cares?—has given no answer to our fervent pleas.

Why, O LORD, do you stand far off?Why do you hide yourself in times of trouble?— Ps 10:1

Where is the healing that walked the earth 2000 years ago? Surely God isn’t dead? Isn’t impotent? Hasn’t turned a blind eye?

Why are you so far from saving me,so far from the words of my groaning?O my God, I cry out by day, but you do not answer,by night, and am not silent. — Ps 22:1b-2
Every fiber of my being cries out with Psalm 13, How Long, O Lord? We live a lament. And I know we are not alone—so I write this for you who need to hear.

What is my testimony? After all this, eight years of Lyme Disease, of Dave unable to work, sometimes coherent, sometimes confused, pain, anger, anguish, despair, feelings of abandonment, rage and bitterness trying to force their way in and take over—after all this—I love the Lord. And that is a bigger miracle than the one we seek.

But for the Lord who gives us life and breath and everything else, who holds us in the very palm of His hand, who weeps when we weep—But for Christ who intercedes for us continuously—But for the Lord I would surely turn away in bitterness and frustration and lack of faith.

But for the Lord who envelopes us in love from practical to spiritual through many at our church—the men who have sought to befriend Dave and minister to him, the women who are my dear friends, the pay Dave received while waiting for disability to kick in that enabled us to keep our house and make it here, the many other gifts and remembrances—But for the Lord, I would not have blessings to count in the midst of this horror—the good days with Dave, our encouraging children, the comfort of home, the joy of seeing green after a long winter.

During the days of Jesus' life on earth, he offered up prayers and petitions with loud cries and tears to the one who could save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverent submission. —Heb 5:7
The One who could save Jesus from death heard His prayers yet did not spare Him…if we have the same response from God that Jesus did, all is still well.

“The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away; may the name of the LORD be praised.” — Job 1:21
My testimony is nothing flashy. I’m a mom raising her kids with the husband I love, for better or for worse. My testimony is just the basics, the things I go back to when Satan fills me with worry and fear: God is good. God is sovereign. God loves me. He will never leave us nor forsake us. And we are safe in His hands—even when everything in our lives screams we are not.

For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord. —Rom 8:38-39
In His Hands,
Merry

8 comments:

Chris said...

It may not be a flashy testimony as you stated, but it sure is an amazing testimony to me, Merry! Your strong relationship with the Lord after all you have been through is such a beautiful reminder of what faith is all about.

Love ya,
Chris

Lona said...

Merry,

I am glad to read your testimony. I imagine that there are days that you need to remind yourself (as we all do) of the truth that feels so far away. May God bless your faithfulness and your falterings, both.

Kim & Dave said...

Thank-you, Merry!

Your example is so encouraging, & I try to remember to pray for you as the Lord brings you to mind!

Anonymous said...

Merry,
Wow! What a wonderful testimony! I thank you for being such a godly example and testimony of a wife and mother! You are a blessing!
Rebekah

eweandtheshepherd said...

Dear dear Merry,
I am so blessed to have stumbled on your blog after searching for the 'power of an indestructible life' verse on the Internet. I can imagine how your 'yes!' to Him in the midst of such pain, when the enemy and others are likely screaming, 'Where is your God?', so moves His heart who gave everything for you in love. I think of Matthew 11:6 and 24:12-13, how Jesus said that many will fall away because Jesus doesn't rescue them from their distress when they expected, but blessed are those who are not offended because of Him. 'For this light and momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison' 2 Corinthians 4:17. I hope to meet you in heaven when you receive your reward for your sufferings for His name!! How beautiful and radiant He will reveal you to be in Him. We are here for Him, and He is so worthy of your faith in Him. Take heart, dear sister, for He delights in you!! He will redeem everything!!

Merry Marinello said...

Thanks for your kind note! Christ certainly sustains us in times when we don't have the strength ourselves. May he continue to walk with you. What led you to search for that verse?

eweandtheshepherd said...

That is so true, it is His life in us. Sometimes I can't exactly trace the path I went on to arrive at a certain place, but I think I searched for that verse because my discipleship group has been studying righteousness, and I guess the Holy Spirit brought it to mind to look up? :-) Amazing to look at Melchizedek, the 'king of righteousness,' and see how he is a type of Jesus and of the way we receive righteousness by faith!

Merry Marinello said...

I'ts one of my favorite verses (and the subtitle for my book). It brought me out of a very dark time because I understood Christ's strength to be able to sustain and carry us through any difficulty--it helped me truly rest in him! Enjoy your discipleship group :-).