For a few very hard years this word was my mantra.
The word means
-undismayed; not discouraged; not forced to abandon purpose or effort
-undiminished in courage or valor; not giving way to fear
But the truth is, I was often dismayed by everything that had taken place, and I did battle discouragement. I battled fear and doubts. I hurt and was angry, and sometimes "undaunted" sounded more like a mockery than a mantra, and I was determined to be real about all of it in these posts, thus the name, Undaunted Reality. More than that, though, I was determined to live undaunted, not because I'm so great or strong, but because my God is, and no matter what this world looks like, He is the only reality that matters.
I pray I live the reality of Him beautifully undaunted.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

When the Promise Turns Painful

Be still.
And know I am God. (Psalm 46:10)

The stilling is first. Then the knowing.

From my journal…

It is tiresome trying to hold onto a promise that never happens…but hurts you, and this just hurts.

Last night I was reading Genesis 13-15, and God made a monster promise to Abram. “Children numbering more than the stars.”

I cannot imagine how hard that was. He and Sarai wanted a baby so badly. It must have been the most raw and painful part of his heart, and God laid it wide open.

Then they waited.

I’m not sure how long went by before the second visit, but surely he and Sarai thought of that baby every single day. Their heart ached every single day. Every month when she wasn’t pregnant must have been a new death. To see Hagar pregnant and to see her belly getting large with the baby she could not give her husband…I cannot imagine the crushing pain Sarai felt.

To see women rejoicing with Hagar, to know another woman could give her husband what she wanted to give him more than anything but couldn’t, I cannot imagine how that attacked her mentally or shredded her emotionally.

And the promise still didn’t come.

I understand to a point, maybe more than I realized before now.

I was given two plainly stated promises years ago, before the collapse and during, and I am still waiting.

I have watched friends live the promises I was given. I have watched them be blessed and flourish, give birth, if you will, and rejoice.

And I am still waiting.

And I ache. Beyond words, I ache, and the only answer I have is to do other things to keep me busy while I am waiting, and it is hurtful when even those doors slam shut. It feels like I’m being told to sit here and just hurt. Logically, I know God has a plan and each closed door is just a redirect from something I would hate. Emotionally, though, it is torturous.

How did Sarah get through that? At least she had a husband to tell her he loved her as she was. Of course, she would tell me at least I have children to raise.

How does one make a heart not want something?

There are days I wish God had not made those promises. Maybe I wouldn’t wake up each day and wonder if it were finally Christmas. But obviously, at that moment, I needed the promise. At that moment, I needed hope.

And I know none of the Lord’s words ever return void. Maybe when everything was collapsing around me, I need a foundation that couldn’t collapse.

But what happens when what is meant to bring hope only inflicts pain? What happens when the promise holds more pain than you can see power? How does one make the pain stop?

I don’t know.

All I know is I’m called to be still. When I still my heart and my mind, when I still the emotions running wild, and refuse to look at what has happened or even what has that makes this whole promise so completely unlikely at this point, when I still the chaos, I know.

He is God.

Does it make the pain go away? For me, no. But it keeps the promise before me, and He keeps my hope alive.
May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him,
 so that you will be filled with hope through the power of the Holy Spirit.
–Romans 15:13--

 Be still. Know that I am God. And hope.


  1. trying to be still RIGHT beside you friend

    1. Dihann, know what you believe about God first and the situation second. When we know what we believe about God, we can sit right next to Him, and He is filled with compassion, strength, and protective love. I'm right with you, dear, but more than that, HE is right with you.

  2. Oh Jerri... I feel your heart aching, and I don't know why these hard, hard things happen either. It seems almost cruel of God, to give such breathtaking promises, to promise the very thing that your heart already longs for, and then make you wait, and wait, and wait... and wait...
    When I think of the people whose stories are told in the bible, and the people whose stories I see being lived out in front of me, the ones who scare and inspire me are the ones who somehow have this utter determination and faith in God and His promises, despite their circumstances giving them no hope of the promise eventuating. These are the ones whose lives are a spectacle and a wonder to me, to the people who hear about them, and - I believe - to the whole spiritual realm as well. Because it goes so much against the grain to be that way! Their raw faith is such a beautiful, scary thing to see. I've wondered these things about Abraham and Sarah and Joseph as well - how on earth did they hold onto their faith in those promises? It's just incredible. Watching you - through your blog - is a little like that as well. You are a warrior, and reading these posts is like having a warrior, mid-fight, run past me and stop, look me in the eyes, and then carry on with the fight. There's blood and sweat and noise, you've taken some big hits... but this is a fight to the death, and you're a long way from being beat. You are holding fast to what you have. Your testimony - including this bit - is powerful, Jerri. Never doubt that.

    1. Donna,
      I received this in my email the day of my last oral surgery, so it has taken me time to respond. I kept thinking I would find some great words of response, but even now, I am simply humbled. Just humbled. So let me just say I read this and printed two copies. I put one in my journal to stay and one in my Bible so I could pull it out and read it and be encouraged. What you wrote is what I pray to be--the warrior who is relentless in this battle, who may stumble but refuses to cry defeat, who holds fast. Oh, Donna, how I pray to hold fast. Thank you for these beautiful encouraging words. If the Lord brings me to your mind, will you, too, pray for me to hold fast? I appreciate you more than words can say.