When Christin Henry placed her three young children to bed that mid-July night, she did not know how much her life was about to change. Around one o’clock in the morning, a fire started within their mobile home, forcing the family to flee the house in search of safety. Unfortunately, this story doesn’t have a happy ending. . .at least, not from the human perspective.
The two-year-old daughter died in the fire that night, and her older brother passed away a short while later. For the next week, the rest of the family did their best to heal and deal with their grief, but the fight was not over. On Sunday night, July 22nd, the last—and oldest—of the three children went home to be with Jesus.
May I be honest with you for a few minutes? It is so difficult to wrap my head around tragedies like this. The Henry’s are good people, Godly people. Why would the Lord allow this to happen? How could a loving God allow such tragedy and heartache in the lives of His children? It’s so hard to fathom and honestly impossible for me to understand. But here’s the thing, I don’t have to understand; I have to trust. Trust God knows what’s best. Trust He is working all things (yes, even these horrible things) for our good. Trust He will gain glory through this trial. That’s undoubtedly what Christin Henry is doing.
From the time she was recovered enough to do so, Christin has been giving updates on Ireland’s (the remaining child) condition. Obviously, there have been many tears shed during these video updates, but what has amazed and convicted me beyond measure is her attitude through all of this. Shortly before her last child passed away, she stated, “I’m heartbroken, of course, but I trust God. I love Him, and I’m not bitter.”
There have been times in my life where I couldn’t honestly say such a thing, and I’ve never faced anything like what this poor couple is going through right now. What an inspiration to see someone rejoicing in the rubble of life. Their world has crumbled into so many jagged pieces, yet this couple is quoting Scripture and giving praise. Their beautiful lives came crashing down around them in an instant, yet they’re not bitter. They are refusing to allow their circumstances to change their view of God or alter their relationship with God. They are standing strong through it all.
My challenge today is two-fold. First off, please be in prayer for the Henry couple. It’s just the two of them now. They have lost their children, their home, their possessions, and life as they once knew it. Everything has changed for them except their faith in God. Please keep this family in your prayers, and if God lays it on your heart to be a help to them financially, you can donate here: https://www.gofundme.com/p368d-help-the-henry-family. I know they will appreciate anything you can do to help them through this challenging transition.
Secondly, if you’re anything like me, you’re convicted and inspired by this great testimony of faith. Talk to the Lord about it. I did. I pleaded with God to show me what it is in my heart that’s keeping me from trusting Him fully in my life. I was shocked at some of the things He revealed, and I prayed for His grace and strength to deal with these issues so I can increase my faith. Like the father of the sick boy in the Bible, my prayer is, “Lord, I believe. Help thou mine unbelief.” Why? Because when my world crumbles, I don’t want to crumble with it. Instead, I want to follow the example set forth by the Henry’s and rejoice in the rubble, knowing God is good no matter what.
How’s your faith today? If you faced a situation similar to this tragedy, how would you respond? Use this time to check up on your trust in the Lord and to work out any areas that may be holding you back from complete surrender. Ask God to search your heart and show you where you’re being led astray and allow Him to take you to new realms of faith.