Today we’re so pleased to introduce the first article in our new 6-week series called “Her Story,” stories of ordinary women experiencing, overcoming, or choosing to do extraordinary things. Today’s story comes from Judy Miller.
Eighteen years ago, I woke up to find that my husband Ken had never come to bed. He had not been feeling well the day before due to side effects from the experimental drug he was taking to treat his hepatitis C, and had stayed home to conduct his work from our spare bedroom. As I passed by the room that Friday morning, I peered through the crack in the doorway and saw that he was still propped up on the futon with the blanket I had covered him with before going to bed.
Because it was a school day, I continued on downstairs to get my two children out the door to catch the bus for school. Returning to the spare bedroom, I opened the door and realized that something was not right. I sat next to him, closely looking at his chest for signs of breathing, but there was none. Slowly I reached out to touch his hand and was faced with the shock that he was gone. No sign of struggle or distress, he was at peace, home with the Savior. Yet a sense of abandonment overwhelmed me; my family would be forever changed.
The day after the funeral, I was thrust into the position of operating a printing business I knew nothing about. I discovered months of unopened bills from the IRS and suppliers. My grief turned to anger as I struggled with the whys – why didn’t my husband tell me that the business was in jeopardy of failing?
Then two weeks after Ken’s death, on a Friday afternoon, the pipes in the building that housed our printing business froze — there would be no plumber available until Monday. My father helped me buy all the space heaters we could find and we placed them strategically to thaw the pipes until help could arrive. It was then I cried out to God, “How much more do you think this little woman can take?” In a still, small voice I heard God speak to my heart, “Judy, it rains on the just and the unjust, but don’t be afraid, for I am with you.”
I recall the anniversary of my husband’s death each year, not from feelings of pain and sorrow, but to remember God’s Word to me, “I am with you.” It is God’s promise to all of us. Jesus came to earth as Emmanuel – God with us. Knowing Christ as Lord and Savior does not exempt us from the trials of this life, but he is with us. I especially find comfort in a verse from 2 Corinthians 9:8, “And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that having all sufficiency in all things at all times, you may abound in every good work.” May you realize his saving grace, peace, joy, and love as you journey through your walk with Christ.
In Judy’s 35-year journey with Christ, she has been a wife and mother, widow and single parent, business woman and jobless worker, grandmother and graduate student. In her current season of life, she is a wife and stepmother who teaches English to immigrant children in her local school district. Through each adventure God has given her his “sufficiency” for every good work: She believes that God does not call the equipped, he equips the called.
To read other articles in our “Her Story” series, click on these titles: The Best Lemonade Maker by Tabby Finton, Full Circle by Carol Battista, The Art Show by Shari Harris, and Rock Bottom Recovery by Kathy Banta