I don't know how it came up, but last night as Damarise and I were playing Dutch Blitz with a friend, we ended up recounting the story of God's faithfulness to our family during Ian's bout with malaria. Our friend had never heard the tale, and we gave him the short and condensed version. As I was in the process of telling it and trying to capture the sadness yet, incomparable peace we felt I was struck (again) with God's absolute power and faithfulness. Later that night I went back and read the story (full of detail that I'd forgotten).
Sometimes, though I feel embarrassed to admit it, I forget about God's faithfulness. Reading the account of Ian and feeling those emotions again of grave sadness and the chilling realization that we thought we would never see Ian again, I was reminded of how faithful God has been to me – to my family.
I remember being in Mom and Dad's bedroom the night that Ian was in the clinic in Nampula and crying like I'd never cried before. I sat and sobbed with Damarise. Every so often one of us would pray out loud. Praying for God's hand to heal Ian. As we sobbed, and as the realization slowly hit us that we were losing our little brother, there was a peace that cannot be explained. God was there. He was listening to our prayers and providing comfort even in the midst of our tears.
The days of angst, waiting, praying, and crying, lasted only a week before God miraculously healed Ian. Our friend last night asked us if Ian was completely back to normal now. And sitting here on the couch thinking about it right now, well, not gunna lie. I am in tears.
I remember the Monday morning that Ian was Medivaced to South Africa. I remember watching as he was pulled out of the ambulance covered in tubes and wires and looking a sickly colour. I remember Andrew starting to cry and the rest of us following suit. I remember Mom telling us to kiss Ian goodbye because we may never see him again. And I remember the gut wrenching realization that Ian was dying.
And as I think back to that day, I am floored. I am floored by God's grace.
We answered our friend's question last night with a resounding yes. Yes, Ian is completely back to normal. He's hit his growth spurt (and now towers over me). His voice has changed. He's in the process of getting his driver's permit. He's started a Christian rap group with his Zambian friends. He has a sense of humor. He can walk, talk, laugh, sing, and play some pretty great basketball.
Why is it so easy for me to forget how faithful God has been? He has proven Himself time and time again. Getting to recount the story of Ian and tell of God's faithfulness is always great. It's a good reminder to me to of how good God is. Even in the worst of times, His peace passes all understanding.
It was a good reminder for me too, as Damarise and I are starting into new lives. In a few weeks we will be moving into a new house. God faithfully provided it and it seems great. We will also be starting into new jobs as well as staying in the jobs we currently have. We won't be going back to college, which is a weird realization. And as the wonder of what the future will hold often terrifies me, I can say with confidence that God is faithful. He has continued to surround my worried, anxious heart with His peace that truly does pass all understanding. He has proven Himself faithful and if I needed a reminder of that, recounting the story of Ian last night was the perfect reminder.
If the God who comforted our grieving hearts and healed Ian, if He could do that, what have I to fear about the future. No matter what happens, no matter what dreams of mine may come tumbling down, no matter if our income is slow, no matter what, there is one thing that is for sure – the faithfulness of the Lord never fails, His mercies are new every morning.
And so I will say, with full assurance God is faithful!