Since Zachary’s death, I have struggled with my faith and spirituality. I have been caught in a quandary: If I believe in an all powerful God who can perform miracles why did He allow my son to die; if I don’t believe in God then I can’t believe in heaven and if there is no heaven, I don’t know where my son is.
I have had a strong Christian faith since I was a small child. I was raised on Jesus, Heaven, and all things Christian. When I was in middle school I briefly lived with my biological father. Next door to us lived his sister-in-law Becky and her husband Steve. Steve was a preacher and one of the most influential people in my life. Becky and Steve took me to their church every time the doors were open. After I moved back to my mother’s house, I continued to attend Sun Valley Baptist Church and Steve’s sermons continued to shape me as a person. The last time I remember attending church there was when Zachary was just a few weeks old. Shortly after that, I left Kentucky.
Living in South Carolina, I have visited many churches but have never found a church to call home. I have never heard a sermon that touched me like a sermon from Pastor Steve.
October 26th, I was feeling especially lost and depressed. Steve crossed my mind and I searched for him on Facebook. I did find him and sent him a message asking if he remembered me and if he would call me. He did remember me and he did call me. I told him I had lost my faith following the death of my child. He said you haven’t lost anything, you know exactly where it is; do you have a church family, he asked. I said no I haven’t had a home church since Sun Valley Baptist. He said go to church, you will find God there and you will find that you haven’t lost your faith.
That sounded very simplistic and I admit I was a little disappointed. This man helped shape me as a person and I expected him to say something deeply profound. I mulled over his words and finally decided he was right. However, I realized I am very angry with the God that I do still believe in. I also decided that I wasn’t ready to find a church right now. I need to take baby steps; starting with learning to pray again. I rather pushed my conversation with Pastor Steve to the back of my mind.
On November 22nd, I got a message from Pastor Steve asking for my address. He had taped one of his church services and wanted to send it to me. He clearly had not pushed our conversation to the back of his mind. He was being the church family I don’t have right now.
I received the taped sermon today. While listening to it, I closed my eyes and it was like I was back at Sun Valley Baptist Church. Excellent sermon on battles, referencing David and Goliath. It was like the message was specifically for me; which is the way all of his sermons always made me feel; they always spoke directly to my heart. I am fighting many battles right now including a battle to survive the loss of my first born son.
For the first time in a long time, I feel like I can win all the battles.