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When God Answers for Eternity, But Not in the Now

By: Brianne Edwards

โ€œ. . . ๐˜ ๐˜ธ๐˜ข๐˜ด ๐˜ด๐˜ต๐˜ฐ๐˜ฑ๐˜ฑ๐˜ฆ๐˜ฅ ๐˜ข๐˜ต ๐˜ข๐˜ฏ ๐˜ช๐˜ฏ๐˜ต๐˜ฆ๐˜ณ๐˜ด๐˜ฆ๐˜ค๐˜ต๐˜ช๐˜ฐ๐˜ฏ ๐˜ธ๐˜ช๐˜ต๐˜ฉ ๐˜ฏ๐˜ฐ ๐˜ธ๐˜ข๐˜บ ๐˜ข๐˜ณ๐˜ฐ๐˜ถ๐˜ฏ๐˜ฅ ๐˜ข๐˜ด ๐˜ข ๐˜ง๐˜ถ๐˜ฏ๐˜ฆ๐˜ณ๐˜ข๐˜ญ ๐˜ฑ๐˜ณ๐˜ฐ๐˜ค๐˜ฆ๐˜ด๐˜ด๐˜ช๐˜ฐ๐˜ฏ ๐˜ค๐˜ณ๐˜ฐ๐˜ด๐˜ด๐˜ฆ๐˜ฅ ๐˜ช๐˜ฏ ๐˜ง๐˜ณ๐˜ฐ๐˜ฏ๐˜ต ๐˜ฐ๐˜ง ๐˜ฎ๐˜ฆ. ๐˜ ๐˜ธ๐˜ข๐˜ด ๐˜ง๐˜ฐ๐˜ณ๐˜ค๐˜ฆ๐˜ฅ ๐˜ต๐˜ฐ ๐˜ด๐˜ช๐˜ต ๐˜ด๐˜ต๐˜ช๐˜ญ๐˜ญ ๐˜ข๐˜ฏ๐˜ฅ ๐˜ธ๐˜ข๐˜ต๐˜ค๐˜ฉ ๐˜ช๐˜ต ๐˜จ๐˜ฐ ๐˜ฃ๐˜บ ๐˜ช๐˜ฏ ๐˜ด๐˜ฐ๐˜ฎ๐˜ฆ ๐˜ค๐˜ณ๐˜ถ๐˜ฆ๐˜ญ ๐˜ค๐˜ฐ๐˜ด๐˜ฎ๐˜ช๐˜ค ๐˜ง๐˜ฐ๐˜ณ๐˜ฎ ๐˜ฐ๐˜ง ๐˜ง๐˜ฐ๐˜ณ๐˜ฆ๐˜ด๐˜ฉ๐˜ข๐˜ฅ๐˜ฐ๐˜ธ๐˜ช๐˜ฏ๐˜จ. ๐˜›๐˜ฉ๐˜ฆ [๐˜ช๐˜ฏ๐˜ท๐˜ช๐˜ด๐˜ช๐˜ฃ๐˜ญ๐˜ฆ] ๐˜ฎ๐˜ข๐˜ฏ ๐˜ธ๐˜ช๐˜ต๐˜ฉ ๐˜ต๐˜ฉ๐˜ฆ ๐˜ถ๐˜ฏ๐˜ฃ๐˜ฆ๐˜ข๐˜ณ๐˜ข๐˜ฃ๐˜ญ๐˜ฆ ๐˜ธ๐˜ฆ๐˜ช๐˜จ๐˜ฉ๐˜ต ๐˜ฎ๐˜ฆ๐˜ต ๐˜ฎ๐˜บ ๐˜จ๐˜ข๐˜ป๐˜ฆ. ๐˜›๐˜ช๐˜ฎ๐˜ฆ ๐˜ง๐˜ณ๐˜ฐ๐˜ป๐˜ฆ. ๐˜ ๐˜ฑ๐˜ญ๐˜ฆ๐˜ข๐˜ฅ๐˜ฆ๐˜ฅ ๐˜ธ๐˜ช๐˜ต๐˜ฉ ๐˜Ž๐˜ฐ๐˜ฅ, ๐˜ธ๐˜ข๐˜ช๐˜ญ๐˜ช๐˜ฏ๐˜จ ๐˜ฐ๐˜ถ๐˜ต ๐˜ญ๐˜ฐ๐˜ถ๐˜ฅ ๐˜ต๐˜ฐ ๐˜ฏ๐˜ฐ๐˜ต ๐˜ญ๐˜ฆ๐˜ต ๐˜ต๐˜ฉ๐˜ช๐˜ด ๐˜ฉ๐˜ข๐˜ฑ๐˜ฑ๐˜ฆ๐˜ฏ.โ€ (From โ€œA Thousand Poundsโ€)

Unanswered Prayers

In that moment, I was praying and pleading with everything I had. Iโ€™d never uttered a prayer more important, more desperate, more urgent than what I was pleading for right then. By that point, I had already notified my husband and my work of the emergency with my baby. I know they were praying too. And yet, my prayer, by all outward appearances, went unanswered.

After the loss of my son, I continued to show up to church, sitting in the pew with tear-stained cheeks. But for years, I found myself writhing and angry every time I came across a verse like: โ€œโ€‹โ€‹Truly, truly, I say to you, whatever you ask of the Father in my name, he will give it to youโ€ (John 16:23b, ESV) or โ€œAgain I say to you, if two of you agree on earth about anything they ask, it will be done for them by my Father in heavenโ€ (Matthew 18:19, ESV).

For a long time, the only response I had for God when I heard things like that was an accusationโ€”๐ฟ๐’พ๐’ถ๐“‡.

God raised Lazarus from the dead after four days in the tomb (John 11:1-44). If He wanted to, He could have restored life and breath to my boy that was dying as I prayed.

Changing My Perspective

It was a long road before I could see that God, indeed, answered the heart of my prayer as I pleaded with the heavens that my childโ€™s life would not end. While Lazarus was raised from the dead, he didnโ€™t go on living forever. He died again, leaving those who loved him to mourn once again. When Jesus raised Lazarus it was a temporary solution. It was miraculous, but temporary.

The thing thatโ€™s hard to see when weโ€™re grieving is that the miracles we long for are not the highest good. Rather, miracles are unusual signs that help us see Jesus is who He says He is, and that we can therefore trust what He teaches.

When I was wailing for God to prevent the death of my child, He didnโ€™t answer the temporal longing of my heart, but He did answer the grander eternal longing.

Answers in Eternity

To restore breath and life to Lachlan as I prayed would have been a temporary solution. None of us escape meeting our mortality, and one way or another, Lachlanโ€™s death would eventually be mourned by those who love him.

God didnโ€™t take my baby from me. He didnโ€™t turn his back on my prayer. Instead, He answered my prayer in a much bigger way than I was asking of Him in that moment. By the work of Jesus on the cross, He erased the eternal effect of death, He made our separation temporary, and He raised my little boy to an eternal life in Him.

I am still left to mourn for the time being, but God has heard my prayer and done what it takes to turn my mourning to joy for all of eternity (Jeremiah 31:13). If I can be patient and trust that He is still good, He will fulfill the promise He made and the deepest longing of my heart will be answered, and there will be no more tears, or mourning, or pain, or separation from the ones we love (Revelation 21:4).

Brianne is the author of โ€œA Thousand Pounds: Finding the Strength to Live and Love Under the Weight of Unbearable Loss.โ€ She is also the founder of Lach's Legacy, a South Dakota Nonprofit aiming to provide comfort to grieving families and working in the fight against SIDS.

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