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Kristen Clark & Bethany Beal: When Life Throws Curveballs

Family Life Today / Dave & Ann Wilson, Bob Lepine
The Truth Network Radio
May 24, 2022 10:00 pm

Kristen Clark & Bethany Beal: When Life Throws Curveballs

Family Life Today / Dave & Ann Wilson, Bob Lepine

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May 24, 2022 10:00 pm

When life throws curveballs, thriving can feel unreachable. Authors Kristen Clark & Bethany Beal relate pain and hope of life outside the one they dreamed.

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This is for any of us. If God never gives you blank right fill in the blank.

Could you still be happy if God never gives you children could you still be happy if God never gives me this very real desire of my heart. I still find joy and purpose and filming in high school and is God and not welcome to family life today when we want to help you pursue the relationships that matter most and will they will soon and you can find or on our family life, family life today, very many nice because you're worrying you're anxious about something else. Oh my goodness you're laying right there worry. I feel like you're always in. Typically I sleep pretty good but you know I've told you like. When the boys were little. How many nights, you were you told me this when I said I lay in bed worried about college tuition. All yeah that's true. I really ships and you worry I mean, when they were five years old and six.

Like how you pay even the mortgage and you don't start a church that we do know if anybody would show fear and anxiety I'd love the suitors that have such a manner. God I never worried, but I talked about that one thing we did but I was really good with my fear and anxiety is kept myself know it was that person about their back on family life today for another program. Welcome back. So my where it just didn't happen. There are no not part of the plan and how you are played often doesn't match up with God. But something erupted there when you talk about what we don't share our anxiety with others. Have you been share everything right things, where one you might feel like I shouldn't be worrying about that I shouldn't be your plot that will keep it to myself. It's hard to be trouble. You know, it's hard to be open and say honestly this is a struggle for me this is a problem for me and you know in the very first conversation we had your string about that wedding dress and how it hung in the back of my closet and I will tell you, by the way, if you miss that one go back to hear the story is pretty started to haunt me and have a lot of worry and fear. And I remember a mind game and just feeling like I remember there was a particular Valentine's Day where I was sitting on my bed with my knees pulled up to my chest. Everyone had their fun and their man in the roses and there there. You know, chocolate bear and I was just sitting there with the stress with I can't tell you how much fear over the future worry I had and I just you know is like a life crisis. What am I gonna do is make it or what if I never get married. What if God has a different plan for me than I thought, what you know can happen and that was my reality in that moment I was in my late 20s I wasn't married at this point I had been in some relationships they didn't work out. And so I'm thinking well I am going to be 85 years old on the front porch somewhere rocking away my life like an old maid and everyone can feel sorry for me. That is my future cool like how we project out, but we do hard and I remember sitting on my bed and God was so faithful to bring back a verse that had been a big encouragement to me in my past its Proverbs 3, five and six and it says trust in the Lord with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding all your ways acknowledge him and he will make your paths straight. And so for me, a huge source of my worry over what was happening in my life in fear over the future so much fear over what was can happen again.

I can have to go through another heart breakup was I going to be that single 85-year-old you on the front porch rocking my life away I realized, for me it was stemming from a lack of trust in God and I realized trust God for you know when I'm 85 I just need to trust him for today.

Do I really believe that he is directing my pathway really believe that he wants what is best for me more than I want what is best for me to I really believe that I can serve him and live for him fully as a single just as much as I could. As a married circumstances would be different thank you I probably believe that in Proverbs 3006 really in that moment Valentine's Day were moment.

I remember this so clearly with the tears streaming down my face.

Think I am so fearful I know that I trust you. I trust that you hold the future that you care about my future and how I can serve you more than I do.

I can wake up tomorrow and do it all over again, I trust you direct my steps to serve you today and do the same thing the next day I didn't have to have all the trust for the next 80 years all I needed was not to hold me and give me strength to trust him for that day.

I'm telling you that brought a lot of peace, but there were even hours later else. This is hard, but this is hard again I'm seeing my friend raising Kristin how this thing that I don't have. This is difficult. I'm afraid of the future, you know, we spent so much time worrying about things that never come to pass, or worrying about things that do come to pass that moment Jesus much grace and peace to handle that. We spent years worrying about something and he's like the strength to deal with that. You know, wait for me today so that was probably one of the biggest seasons of my life. For the longest amount of years and over 10 years where I struggled to be afraid and fearful of the future I'm thinking of phone call that I received yesterday of a woman who just found out her husband was cheating on me, talk about worry here. There's so much I'm thinking about all the incredible people that have gone through really painful divorce that was never their plan but the worry, like how my going to take care of the kids and what does my future look like.

I literally said last week with dad that I coach football with whose daughter was in the hallway of the Oxford school shooting live right there. My son I exited chapel for the football team. I knew the Team got killed was the first show that I'm talking to my buddy and you know Mike how you doing you know he's like you know my daughter was walking down the hall when she saw way off in the distance. Kids screaming and running and she literally turned her friend and said shooter ran billing Aiko how does she know to go save been so trained she knew I shouldn't hearing gunshots. She was so far away, but she saw it and ran out the building and goes it's been months. She can't sleep. No, just have never had so many would just walk through the kind of things that all those families in Oxford dealing with in you know you talked about your tragedies and things you gone through that anxiety is real. That worries real arming Christians are about three miscarriages. I'm guessing the fear and worry about.

Will I ever future look like groups you yeah oh every day turn to God over and over again and through the journey of a decade of the diagnosis of unexplained infertility-fertility, but we don't know why everything looks great. I mean that's frustrating and hard. I want answers to get pregnant but then every time to only miscarry now have this also diagnosis of her current marriage plus unexplained infertility on me. I just like the diagnosis for aligning happen is God doing. How can any of this be good. And through that journey and I'm still on the journey itself not been able to conceive and bear a child and still testing… Holding it with open hands still hopeful still praying for that and if you lay in bed though worrying worrying about what if I do get pregnant again. You know what I never do and I have a sister who's very close to me who I'm looking at right now. Asked me a question forever ago we read about the center but not part of the plan, but she this was way before you had your miscarriages and interestingly she said is God never gives you children could you still be happy and I just remember you saying this is a very loving way. This is a long time ago asking you like.

Do you think if God never again this is for any of us. If God never gives you blank right on the blank. Could you still be happy and what she was asking was God never gives me this very real desire of my heart.

I still find joy and purpose, and fulfillment in Christ alone is God I'm not and I wanted to quickly stable, of course… Everything. I think it's Christians.

That's a quick answer but we have to dig down to it, is God truly and often I remember this journey of wrestling with this fear and its anxiety and got enough. Is he really enough but I want to so… You say you're not. God is showing me through the pain that peace in the absence of pain but it's turning to God in the midst of our pain. Every single one of us has a story of pain whether something we've gone through were walking through her were going to walk through and we can find peace in the midst of it. As we turn to God and we see that in Isaiah 26 three, which became an anchor for me over the last few years as God redirected my story twist and turn. That was not a part of my plan, which is directing my husband and I to international adoption, something we never saw coming, but it's Isaiah 26 three which says you keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on you and you and so I memorize that verse, I would take every single day of my heart was prone to worry. Write the song we are prone to worry prone anxiety prone to fear. I would remind myself you keep me in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on you, whose heart trust in you and I got help me to trust you because I keep my mind on you as I trust you. That's where peace comes from and whether my circumstances ever change or not, whether I can ever have children and whether I go through more miscarriages. I don't know but I know you are going to give me grace for today and as I sat my hope on you. You will give me peace that where their days a year like I want to go there.

I want to read.

I don't want to think about it. I just want to be in the dump.

You know, I'm tired. Tired. I'm tired Lord that you prayed that Lebron is what we have this like a closet with our bowl of ice cream and RTO's to borrow Mary like you open the door and talk about me, but then you've tasted God's goodness when you gone to him, I guess, which is a deeper wealth than any package you can ever provide. I mean really what is the painful emotions and it might feel good in the moment, but it's not a lasting solution. I've turned those quick fixes more times than I can count.

And God has been so patient and grace is drawing me back to him saying perfect peace comes to you as you come to me where you find it is found in your relationship with me At the end of the day we were created to be most satisfied in God. Our greatest purpose isn't the life we always wanted to glorify God and build his kingdom the way he's been for us right. We want to build a Christian you build your kingdom.

According to my plan and got to know you are a vessel for my the works I set before you, and you will build my kingdom the way I am calling you to build and it's really that humble surrender of saying like Mary like okay Lord, let it be done to me or when will your will be done, not mine. I found this girl defined his chagrin versus just with the girl defined but really here's a paragraph. I don't know when or which one he wrote this poses the last decade has taught me that joy doesn't come from getting the life I always imagined, but from trusting God with the life he has for me and believing that his plans truly are better because they are exact quote. So why obviously we heard you know your story and so it is like an empty truth is had a life that didn't really struggle you like you, whatever do you don't know you know you gone through, and even still, so you look your boys adopted what you think about God's plan. While I think you knew this all along that I had no idea this coming visual that always comes to mind for me is this idea as humans at Lycra looking at our life story through a tiny straw. If you hold up a strong you look through it. You can't write you like look around the room. You can only see it little bit, but God sees our story from the beginning to be and everything. So when he says in his word. Trust me or not testing a God who's also looking through a straw in a God who sees everything.

He has a good plan for us. That may include suffering may include files for the purpose of building endurance drawing us closer to him, allowing our stories to be a place of hope that other Christians can come and even unbelievers and think how look at the hope you have in the midst of that coming.

More about that and so trusting a God who is sovereign who holds all things together in his hand and I had no idea that God had these two precious boys there and 11 and seven brothers from Ukraine and through my sister marrying a missionary in Ukraine and moving there.

We got connected with the country of Ukraine and there was a lot of fear though in my talk about fear and anxiety and worry. I was terrified of an option I had all the typical answers for why it was good and godly and Christian should do it.

But for me not. I've been to so many miscarriages I built my hope, only to have it come crashing down. I don't want to go through that again on the adoption path either.

So many unknowns there so me and answered questions. So many things that can go wrong upsets. I've heard all the stories I was so fearful and it took God really digging into my heart and exposing the fear and anxiety about adoption on him, exposing and helping me to see that I was just covered in fear. I was not trusting God I was not openhanded at all and then walking a journey as surrender and really going to God's word and think God, what is your heart for adoption and what do you say about this, and then seeing the parallels with the gospel and our adoption as God's children and just the beauty of thought and God doing a 180 and my heart and 180 and my husband's heart and then giving us a desire for adoption that we had never had before a genuine desire and longing, and then walking down that path, and God bringing these two precious brothers who spoke no English and we speak into our family less than a year ago, but in answering the cries of my heart for motherhood in a way that I never saw coming because for me becoming a mom that having biological kids and God really helped me to see that his plan for bringing together families can look so many different ways and he did answer my prayer for motherhood and now it's one of the biggest blessings in my life, asked the two of you and Kristin. You can start who we QB now had you not gone through infertility and your three miscarriages because we have a choice. Dave, my pastor husband always says that your pastor like you taught this all the time. The trials can make you better or better and you both have obviously become better as a result of your trials as you put your focus on Jesus, but as we go through those trials, like God shapes us like a workout.

If we trust him. We add these new muscles and we look different than we had before. What would you look like Kristin first.

One of the things that you gained as a result of suffering that you walk through your listening to David and Wilson with Kristin Clark and Bethany Beale on family life today. We are Kristin's answer in just a minute.

The first we hear from you regularly about how important it is for us to have these kinds of conversations to help all of us think wisely, biblically, compassionately about subjects like and as you can imagine, we've had to make some tough choices again this year were hoping that through the generosity of people just like you, we can continue to reach your home and really holds everywhere. This is an especially unique and critical time of year to donate because we had some friends of the ministry come alongside us and offered to double your monthly gifts for 12 months up to $300,000 would become a monthly partner right now what is that makes it means if you give $25 a month. The impact actually and that when you do give this month as our thanks will send you a bundle of resources including books, one not part of the plan Kristin Clark in hearing from today and do a lifelong love like Gary, so becoming a monthly partner. Having your gift doubled every year impacting families for the glory of Jesus getting a bundle of books sounds great to me. You can give right or by calling one 803 586-329-1800 family L is in life and in the word today. Right now, back to what Kristin and Bethany have gained as a result of the suffering that is Kristin. I would say I've gained spiritual endurance has gained a deeper relationship with the Lord. As a result, because I've walked the valleys of questioning his character and got argue really good and what are you doing and barely getting answers that deepening my faith and trust anchoring my hope in God and who he says he is and believing that from that level you know, not just a theological knowledge of my head, but that transforming my heart and now I know there is no true hope outside of the Lord, and I don't think I would have that relationship with God. Had I not walked through the valleys. What about you Bethany, how are you different you know I remember a moment I came face-to-face with a lot of my idolatry of what I thought I needed in order to be happy and I know if I had done things my way. I definitely wouldn't be sitting here I would be married to someone else. I don't know what my life would look like, because I was in a very unhealthy I was a very toxic relationship. During this period of desperation, wanting to get married because I had made such an idol out of my dreams and my way and it took a lot of work from cut to help me see what an idol you know my desires had become. I'm so grateful that God he didn't give up on me with my right Bethany's loss, causing out with her. She's just an old guy.

Whatever that I see how I did have a good plan for me and over the last really 10 years. For me it was 10 years of singleness 10 years of like, okay, trying to figure out what in the world. My life was gonna look like.

I think that really one like learning to trust God in deep way, has helped me to see like my plans are always gonna look like his plans, and the man that I did end up marrying 10 years ago you would've told me you can end up with this guy that likes right for one, he's shorter than me. I won a few inches taller than me and I would completely on that the loan would've looked over him and what are very open to different and he's younger than me and so I know I wouldn't be married to him because I had my own. My life was going a certain way and suggesting now how God had someone for me so specific and he is the most incredible man and now we both get to serve God to gather and we have our sweet son, David Junior and I went to been doing girl find because I would've done that things go my way. You know I would have demanded that I have been in your own life.

It's crazy because we don't know this isn't the life. Ultimately, I always dreamed of them wanted by look back on like this is better than anything I could've won. It doesn't mean that it didn't have the heart ache and the suffering. It doesn't mean that I'm not still grieving the loss of my own miscarriages.

I don't know exactly what the future holds no potholes my future. I know he's been faithful and so for me I just see how I can look back on God's faithfulness and I can trust him. I can trust him even if life never changes.

Even if I only have my one little David Junior and you never have a healthy pregnancy again for me are you know whatever it is I know that God is trustworthy. I seen it for myself. I seen him be faithful and genuinely. Truthfully, I have so much gratitude and joy in my heart because of the trials and so I think it's so important through the hardship. As difficult as both and you and Kristin described like take that one step out to God asking because one day if you choose that you'll look back and you'll take hot. I think you for taking me through that terrible and awful as difficult as that was actually grateful because it true me closer to you and my life is so much richer and deeper in the Bible says that that God's hand are pleasures for evermore. And it's not the earthly pleasures that deep satisfaction of knowing him, and knowing when they were to spend forever with him this just a taste of that. Sometimes we go through those hardships for me. I'm I'm actually very grateful for what God has brought me through and grateful for my husband even know one or 2 inches shorter elicited shorter to a lot of us are you things that inspires me listen to you to is things and anxiety, especially fear can do in person's life is, it paralyzes us afraid to risk because we've risked and it didn't work or we had hoped and then ago – as you said.

And so you just sort of get you get safe guard your heart and you just you just am not gonna take a risk and even adopting the risk of us. I got only a step out again and I'm scared. Way to go. I'm just thinking of the listeners like to live in the safe, protective life, which I get it.

I understand what you are risking what you say.

Trust me and you know it may not go to what you want, but I'm sitting here thinking okay you two are remarkable women, why did your parents do, what would you say there some repairs. Listeners like man I hope my son my daughters walk with Jesus.

One day we wrote a parenting book about that.

Hope you know your parents have never met him as a command. They must've done something things that you think I'm really glad they didn't, then I'm sure they wanted to give up over the years Chris and I will always have a long way to go, but we were we were and I started out by seeking out in the middle of the night and eating all the ice cream in the freezer and then lying about it the next morning we did that for many months to bigger this is a good start a little worse than ice cream I think happened, but watching, you know, watching her parents faithfulness as imperfect as they would say it was about kids and there was 1/9 and he only lived for eight hours and it was full-term and we didn't find out until my parents didn't find out until he was basically about to be born that there were life altering circumstances, and he wasn't in a make it and that wasn't really defining moment.

I know for me of watching my parents go through literally holding their baby having to bury him. It was such a horrible experience but they didn't get there at God, and they literally with all of us kids. We were younger.

At that time, they literally were the ones who were telling us like God is still God. He is still faithful. We don't understand why he gave us this last baby and I was the last one and took him home to be with Jesus.

But we know that he study has a bigger purpose and so then through their own suffering, not pulling apart, but ultimately pulling us all together with such a defined moment and I don't even think they realize how much of it impact they may just their faithfulness, not something specific, they said, but then just striving to see God's goodness and to point us to him through their grief and meet a massive impact on me and that's that's been really defining they let you guys see it didn't hide it now really anything because it's really books about our parents also really emphasized our relationship over rules and I know and having a parent myself I like yeah I'm on the black and white lady like alright kids here the boundaries in the role of the bargain at this is that then focus on behavior right there rules about course, but they were very focused on the relationship and so they would allow us to ask questions. The cable why the teenagers and they would explain the key here is why we think this is best. Here is why were doing this because we love you. You don't like it but here's my meeting. This is the better path for you and why were putting up these boundaries and these guardrails. I just remember as I grew into adulthood, always feeling like I can go to my parents and talk to them about anything because I knew the relationship was more important to them than just us following the rules, just doing the right thing and so I think for any parent listening.

That's a huge thing is to continue to incest and that relationship get to know your child get to know their heart is in the long run.

I know for me that really has continued into my adulthood to keep me connected to my parents because I feel like well I have a genuine relationship with them. Just as I listen to think of goods girl defined with your motto is more defined as well. All of us to find our our designer defines this way to go to get them enlisted and women.

Listen, if we lived that out and you say many times in your book, not part of the plan that you got to know the heart of the creator. Do you trust him and I think that's what I've heard from you for these Western programmers like me get to know the designer Jesus. That's his name and when you know his name, and though his heart. You can trust him. The more you know yourself, defined by who he says you are only getting to know him to try to say that there is a better. Thanks. That's David and Wilson with Kristin Clark and Bethany Peel on family life to remind you that you can get there book which is called, not part of the plan. Trusting God with the twists and turns of your story you can get that when you become a monthly or by calling 1-800-358-6329 the 2000 F is in family L as in life, and then the word today.

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David and Wilson are going to be talking with John and Cory Cooper from the band skillet.

John and Corey raise their kids on the road alongside some of the most famous heavy metal bands in the world and found that even in the times of fear, wondering about how their kids would turn out steering them towards Jesus was the best priority is apparent that tomorrow we hope you can join us on behalf of David and Wilson. I'm shall be back next time for another edition of family life today. Today is an action of family accrue ministry helping you pursue the relationships that matter most

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