"Faith is the substance of thing hoped for, the evidence of things unseen" Hebrew 11:1
God is unseen. Faith is a choice. The choice to jump from the cliff of reliance on yourself and trust that God will catch you. And he will. And the funny thing is he is still unseen, but from that spot in the shelter of his arms, you can clearly see the evidence all around you. Count your blessing...evidence.
Look at a beautiful sunset...evidence.
Watch your children sleep...evidence.
Faith is a gift. When you lean into that shelter it does not take away fear, or worry, or even pain necessarily Those things are part of a flawed human existence. But one thing that is a constant when you let go and trust in God is Peace. Because...God is Good, all the time.
"in all things God works together for Good..." Romans 8:28
God doesn't make mistakes. We do, but he doesn't. Not when he made you. Not when he made me. And not when he made a little girl named Reagan who has an extra chromosome.
Psalm 139: 13-16
For you formed my inward parts;
you knitted me together in my mother's womb.
I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.
Wonderful are your works;
my soul knows it very well.
My frame was not hidden from you,
when I was being made in secret,
intricately woven in the depths of the earth.
Your eyes saw my unformed substance;
in your book were written, every one of them,
the days that were formed for me,
when as yet there was none of them.
I never grieved over Reagan having Down syndrome. I was scared. I didn't know what it all meant or what we were facing. But I did not grieve. Because I knew that she was created by God and God does not make mistakes. He has a plan and that gives me peace. I don't have to know it all or do it all or understand it all. I just have to believe.
"For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for peace and not evil, to give you a future and a hope" Jeremiah 29:11
God's plan is better than anything I could come up with for myself even if it doesn't look like it on the surface. Just like our children do not understand why we ask certain things of them so that they learn and grow in the best way, we don't always understand where God is taking us, but we can trust that his plan is good. I could give example after example (and have in previous posts) of the amazing path of God's plan in retrospect. Nobody wants to walk down the path that looks painful, but when you get to the other side and look back and see what you've learned and BAM it hits you what you would have missed if you didn't have faith. So when I get scared and overwhelmed, I turn back and give it up and know that no matter how hard (broken car, no money, Down syndrome, heart surgery) life gets, there is a Father I can put my faith in.
It is very hard to put all of this into words and I'm probably doing a poor job of it because faith is personal, but I can describe it this way: Have you ever had a horrible, terrible, no good very bad day? (whether it is really bad or just one of those days) At that moment you have no hope and no joy. And someone comes to you and says "just lean on me, its going to be okay". They fold you into their arms and you breath and feel warmth and peace take the place of stress and whatever has been wrong. You know that feeling? That is what faith feels like when you climb into God's lap. That is what has brought me through some truly horrific things in life.