Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "Praise Him All Ye Little Children"1 (Lyrics)
Philippians 4:6 – Don't worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. (NLT)
After numerous doctor visits which brought no answers, my wife and I were frustrated.
The unknown started after a recent move. My wife lifted an item and felt a stabbing pain. Thinking that she had pulled the mesh from a recent hernia surgery, we visited the general surgeon. After testing, he determined that it was only scar tissue.
Then, unexplained weight gain resulted in a trip to the emergency room and then to the cardiologist. Pills to reduce her fluid didn't work. More tests followed. One revealed an enlarged spleen and liver.
We re-visited the general surgeon, who sent her to a kidney specialist. The cardiologist, in the meantime, sent her to a digestive disease doctor.
Weeks and months passed between the tests and doctor visits. We never discovered the answer to her unexplained fluid retention, but her frustration — and mine — built as we awaited answers while trying not to imagine the worst.
Paul could also have been frustrated by the unknown. Would he survive the persecutions or the trip to stand trial before the Roman emperor? Would his friends betray him? Instead, he did what he advised others to do in today's verse.
Praying about the unknown is crucial. Every night, I pray for my wife to have strength to face what might be ahead and for God to give the doctors wisdom to find out the reason for her dilemma.
Trusting is important in times of the unknown. God has never let me down and promises not to, regardless of life's challenges. I can trust Him to work things for my good — even things that appear bad. He has my best interests at heart.
Additionally, I choose to believe that God is in control. Doing so helps to control my anxiety and frustration level. If He isn't, I have an even larger problem than the things causing my frustration.
In my wife's case, I believe that God can guide the doctors to discover the reason for her health concerns and to give her the proper treatment. I also believe that He can heal her apart from the doctor's intervention if He so chooses.
Don't let the frustration of the unknown lead you to doubt, anger, bitterness, or unbelief in a loving God. Rather, believe that God loves you and has your situation under control.
Prayer: Father, we trust You to guide us safely into and through the unknowns of our lives. Amen.