God’s Constant Protection
Posted in Fear/Anxiety
Scripture: “Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.” – Isaiah 41:10
The summer before my freshman year began like any other summer. I spent time with my friends, went to the beach with my family, and enjoyed my break from the school year. But towards the end of that summer, my Aunt Peggy progressively became more sick while she was battling cancer, and in July she passed away. On July 19, 2017, the funeral service was held for my Aunt Peggy, and soon after, my family and a few close family friends drove to Greenlawn Cemetery for her graveside burial.
After the service, many of my family members were talking, and as we were about to leave, a man drove up to my Aunt Jennifer and asked her if this was Peggy’s funeral. Upon hearing that it was, the man turned his car, drove over the curb and drove directly through the middle of the tents where the service had just been held, hitting and running over multiple of my family members including myself. The man’s car then got stuck on a gravestone where he remained until the police arrived and arrested him. Both of my grandfather’s legs were broken, after which he had multiple surgeries and long stays in the hospital and rehab facilities, alongside many other people in my extended family who were also injured.
At first, this event made me completely lose my faith in God. I didn’t understand how he could let this happen to my family. How could he let a man hurt so many people when they were already experiencing the pain of losing a family member to cancer? Why would God let my Aunt Peggy’s funeral and celebration of her life be ruined by a man who didn’t even know my family but chose to hurt us? How could he let my younger cousins and I experience something so terrifying when we were just children? I didn’t understand how God could let this happen, and my faith was rocked.
However, over the coming weeks, my perspective changed. I began to realize that God had protected my family that day and through the aftermath of it. God was there and protected my family– no one died and everyone healed from their injuries.
God also helped show me how many people were there for me and my family during our tragedy. The first people I text when I arrived at the hospital that afternoon were the girls in my Wednesday morning Bible Study from church and school. I asked them to keep my family in their prayers. They responded with messages of love and concern and promises to keep my family in their prayers.
Throughout the time members of my family were in the hospital for surgeries, pastors from Eastminister came and visited, prayed over members of my family before procedures and reminded us that the Eastminister community was there if we needed absolutely anything. Church members I didn’t know were reaching out and sending prayers for the quick recoveries of my family.
Over the next few months and coming school year, I grew closer to God, especially when going through confirmation during my freshman year. I learned that my church will always be there for me, and I found more faith in God for protecting my family and me. I saw God through the prayers and all the people who cared so deeply for my family in one of the hardest moments of our lives. While I originally doubted God, I learned to keep my trust and faith in him and remembered that everything happens for a reason. As Isaiah 41:10 says, “Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.”
Prayer: Thank you, Lord, for helping me see that you are always with me, especially in the hard times. Amen.
Submitted by Carter Montgomery