My wife and I woke up early that morning. In fact, way too early in my opinion. It was 3:00 am when the alarm went off. Unfortunately, I had been awake since 2:30. The last few days had been restless as we prepared to travel to South Dakota for my mother-in-law’s funeral. Our flight was at 5:30 am, which meant we needed to leave the house around 3:45. The plan was to drive ourselves to the airport and leave our car in long-term parking. It was going to cost us a pretty nickel to leave it there for almost a week, but what choice did we have? We didn’t want to burden our friends by asking for a ride – and at 3:45 am for that matter. Plus, we would need a way back from the airport as well. No, that would be asking too much. My friend Dan had offered a couple of times to take us to the airport and pick us up, but that was just too much to ask. Wasn’t it?

I must admit a flaw I have. I love helping friends and family out when they are in need, but I am horrible at accepting their generosity. I would welcome a friend calling me in the middle of night, even if it just meant they needed to talk, but I fail in letting others do the same for me.

“Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.” (Galatians 6:2 NIV)

We ended up allowing Dan to bless us by driving us to and from the airport. It really served as a reminder to me that in a society that continues to push God out of their lives, there are still many wonderful God-loving people. Dan is just one example. There are many friends and family who have overwhelmed us with their love over the past few weeks, and to list them all would be almost impossible.

It is during the difficult times that our true love and trust in God will shine the most. Unfortunately, we often question God and His perfect plan. The pain is so unbearable that we simply can’t see any way it could be a good thing. There have been times of struggle in my life where I quickly see God’s plan. Other times it takes a while before I see how God’s plan is far better than anything I imagined. Yet other times I believe we simply are not meant to know. We simply must have faith.

As I have grown older, I have noticed how God continues to send us help through other people. They help us to see the things we can’t see in the darkness and to find the hope we need to get us through the difficult times. They demonstrate God’s love and mercy.

2019 so far has been a year of loss for me, but it has also been a year of great gain as I have been able to clearly see God’s love through those we lost. Hopefully I can be more giving of my love and more accepting of the love from others.

Maybe God is calling you to be the answer to someone else’s prayers, or maybe He is sending people to you as an answer to your prayers. Either way, I pray you allow yourself to feel God’s love – in whatever form it may come.

“A generous person will prosper; whoever refreshes others will be refreshed.” (Proverbs 11:25)

Mark Etting

Author Mark Etting

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