by Candy Arrington @CandyArrington
Then I will ask the Father to send you the Holy Spirit who will help you and always be with you. I won’t leave you like orphans, I will come back to you. John 14:16, 18 CEV
This year marked the tenth anniversary of my mother’s death. Although there have been times when the date slipped my mind until after it passed, this year I was keenly aware that I have been without her for a decade.
In recent months, I’ve been sifting through remaining boxes, reading letters, finding photographs, and examining rolls of plans drawn by my builder father. My son and his family lived in my childhood home following my mother’s death. Now, after ten years, the house is for sale, and I’m having to let this piece of my history go. Saying good-bye to the house I grew up in, a house my father built 70 years ago, is hard. In many ways, this transition stirs feelings I had right after Mama’s death and years before after Daddy died. Even with my husband, children, and grandchildren close by, I feel a little like an orphan.
Perhaps Jesus’ disciples and followers experienced similar feelings of abandonment as they huddled behind locked doors following His death. They feared what might happen next. Would they be arrested and executed, too? Although Jesus tried in the final days of his ministry to make them understand what would transpire, they were unprepared and stunned by his absence, left with feelings of grief and uncertainty.
All of us feel abandoned at times. When health issues, job losses, financial crises, and relationship problems overwhelm, it is human to wonder why God doesn’t immediately swoop in and fix everything. Why doesn’t he stop the pandemic and return our lives to normal? Why doesn’t he calm unrest? While we may never have answers to our questions, we have the assurance of the presence of the Holy Spirit, our Advocate and Comforter.
Over two thousand years ago, God sent Jesus to dwell among us and rescue those who were lost, orphaned, and without hope. Jesus was God with skin on: a man who experienced temptation, persecution, pain, and grief, but also joy. He promised never to abandon us as orphans. His presence, via the Holy Spirit, and his promise to return, are our hope.
As I approach a new season of life, I see how the Lord sustained generations of my family through financial hardship, physical ailments, wars, periods of grief, and loss. We are not the first to experience challenges, fear, and uncertainty. Just as the Holy Spirit guided our parents and their parents, He will lead and protect us. He is a comforter, helper, and friend. Having been adopted into the family of God, none of us are orphans.
But when the right time came, God sent his Son, born of a woman, subject to the law. God sent him to buy freedom for us who were slaves to the law, so that he could adopt us as his very own children. Galatians 4:4-5 NLT
About the author: Candy Arrington has written hundreds of articles and devotionals, often on tough topics. Her books include AFTERSHOCK: Help, Hope, and Healing in the Wake of Suicide (B & H) and When Your Aging Parent Needs Care: Practical Help for This Season of Life (Harvest House). Candy is a native South Carolinian, who gains writing inspiration from historic architecture, vintage photographs, nature, and the application of Biblical principles to everyday life. Learn more about Candy at www.CandyArrington.com, where you can also read her blog, Forward Motion: Moving Beyond What Holds You Back.
Candy’s book, When Your Aging Parent Needs Care, is a help to those who face the special effort of caring for a parent. It provides support and direction to enable the caregiver to be spiritually, physically, and emotionally prepared for the day to day challenges they face.
Join the conversation: How does the Holy Spirit help you?