In November of 2009, a new friend called me and said, “Michelle, we found out today that our baby died, can you watch our daughter so we can go deliver our baby girl.”  Within the next hour, their toddler daughter was on our doorstep with her shocked, grieving parents were headed to the hospital to deliver their stillborn daughter.

After I had put all the kids to bed, I headed over to the hospital to talk with them about what could happen next.  Those things that you don’t want to talk about. Taking pictures with your baby, having a memorial, cremation or burial, and leaving the hospital without a baby. While we were sitting there talking, I noticed something, I noticed that somehow, in this pain and grievous day, Jesus was here and His glory was present.

I came home and told my husband, “I hate this and this is so hard, but I saw Jesus’ glory in that room and I can’t explain it.”  Early that morning I was sitting on my sofa holding their daughter watching Thomas the Train with her and all I could think about was that somehow God gets glory in this painful world, and I don’t understand how.

The next several days, were filled with having them over for breakfast and there was a service later on that week, and even as we sat in a friend’s living room singing Be Thou My Vision, I felt a strong sense that Jesus knows this pain, He feels it. It is not foreign to Him.

About three years prior, our second son went to be with Jesus the day after his birth, and for years I was struggling with how Jesus gets glory in these dark times.  It doesn’t seem glorious by any means.  It seems broken and jacked up and uncontrolled.  But during that particular week, in the midst of such brokenness, I realized Jesus gets this glory, because He has died for it.  He has conquered it.  This isn’t the end.

Death is swallowed up in victory. 

O death, where is your victory?

O death, where is your sting?

The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

1 Corinthians 15:54-56

Soon after that I started writing this little blog.  I started seeing His glory in the hard.  Seeing His glory in the beauty around us.  It’s easy when we are in pain to see beautiful mountains, but we have such thick scales on our eyes that they don’t appear as majestic because we are angry and frustrated at the Creator.  His glory shines through even when we don’t want to see it.

I wanted to start searching for His glory, even though it was right in front of me.  I had to see it, because I had to be reminded that He is present and working.  Even if it was just a vibrant red leaf in the fall or the enormous height of a tree in the Redwoods.  Or how the clouds are placed in the sky. I also needed to see the personal things, the moment that Jesus saved my children and they professed their belief.  The times when we were scraping by and somehow we were able to pay our mortgage.  When friend’s heard that their child may not live and then Jesus saved their lives.  That’s big.  Even the day of The Accident, when my husband and I were clinging to one another praying, asking why, crying out broken and chaotic, but also full of peace in our souls and Truth in our hearts.  I cannot explain God’s glory there. I cannot try to explain it. It just was.

Seeing Glory is a place where I hope, I will not water down the Gospel.  I hope that I will not be trite and sugar coat the brokenness and the pain of the world and make light of the struggles that we all face, because they are real and they are hard.  I hope that it will be a place of honesty in the hard and the wretched pain that we must walk through in the world, but that it will also be saturated with the confidence and knowledge of the Hope of glory.

So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the thing that are unseen are eternal.  2 Corinthians 4:16-18


Why Seeing Glory