Many times families feel desperate and hopeless. I empathize with what they are muddling through when a loved one identifies as transgender. Hopelessness appears to be swallowing them up in their despair. Jackii experienced this hopelessness when her husband walked away from their marriage to live as a female. She struggled to eat and sleep; she felt drained and alone.
Like many people I talk to, Jackii struggled to live in hope. All of us need the hope that only Jesus Christ offers, especially when our world is turned upside down. When we realize we are engaged in a spiritual battle for our loved ones to know truth, we begin to view our circumstances through a different set of lenses.
Satan uses hopelessness against family members when the earthquake of a loved one living out of the will of God rocks their world. He also uses alienation to make us feel as if no one really understands or is willing to offer godly support when our life is split at its core. If we continue to feel alienated, we will harm ourselves even more by closing off the support and friendship other people, or an organization such as Help 4 Families, can provide.
The tremors of this emotional earthquake sometimes create a feeling of abandonment in family members. I suppose it’s similar to what Job experienced when a series of catastrophes upended his life. Are you familiar with his story in the Old Testament? Overcome with sorrow and covered with sores, Job pleaded with a seemingly apathetic God for answers and relief. Have you been in that place?
Family members often feel like Job felt. They experience powerlessness as they realize how little control we human beings have over our life and our loved one’s life. I’m sure Job wouldn’t have volunteered to have his family almost instantly taken from him or to endure an illness that seemed beyond anyone’s ability to heal.
But we serve a God who can triumph over our limitations, a God who dispels the doom and fear that Jackii and many of us face. In Isaiah 41:10–13, God provides this encouragement: “Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.” The apostle Paul reminds us that, no matter what our circumstances are, we can give “thanks to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Corinthians 15:57). We can also gain strength by remembering that “in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us” (Romans 8:37).
We each face a decision. We either remain in the rubble of the earthquake and cower in fear, or we make a commitment to guard our hearts from walking in hopelessness and choose to trust God. What will you choose?