When Uncertainty Leads to a Deeper Understanding of Faith

Walking through each aisle was like walking through my pain all over again.

Somehow the supermarket has this attachment of memories with my husband.  I either feel warm or heartbroken when I enter the place. As I walk through each aisle, sometimes I browse products with glassy eyes on a lousy day. Other times, I look at the shelf and feel like someone is hugging me from the back, giving me comfort.

Yes! I hate shopping. For years, I have ordered my groceries online. But then, my husband came to my rescue. He is always very enthusiastic about going to the grocery store and shopping for me. 

This is why the grief seems never-ending in grocery stores. The anger rises, and I blame God for not letting me enjoy him longer.

Although it was shocking when the doctor told us he had brain cancer, an inoperable and terminal illness. I was optimistic; I thought this was just a test, we could go through this, and he will be healed.

But I was wrong. It wasn’t a test; I needed to understand what true faith meant.

I had a hard time picturing how our life would look like post-chemotherapy. It took me a while to process what happened as I took him to the hospital daily for treatment. We were trying to be positive. We were full of hope that he would recover, and that the tumor would eventually shrink.

The combination of hope with uncertainty was unsettled. I don’t know how I should approach this. As a caretaker, my life was on standby. I never knew what would happen to him next.

But those uncertainties led me to a deeper understanding of what a deep valley means, which David talks about in Psalm.

God also showed me His steadfast love, which I sang for a long time, but I never really understood. He listened to my weepy prayer and let me rest all night; the next day, I was filled with a new strength to face the day. When God filled me with His steadfast love, I could love my husband in the difficult time of caring for him. I don’t know how I would have survived for a year without purpose if I didn’t have that love.

In the desert, God shows me what surrender looks like.

As I walked in the deep valley, where it was dark, the sun couldn’t penetrate because it was so deep. I must walk with God, who is holding my hand, and trust Him to lead my way out. Surrendering was hard because, as humans, we like to plan, to know what’s next for us. We prefer something we can see. Those moments become an exercise for me. When he passed away, it wasn’t easy. I must face the cycle of grief and trauma. 

Three years have gone by, and never once has God forsaken me.

As I keep that surrender attitude, I am choosing to be brave in walking through life without my husband. One thing I know: I was made to praise and worship God. By making Him my fortress in life, I witness my life go from the impossible to the possible in many ways.

Christine Monteiro is a Certified Life Coach, entrepreneur, writer, and an Autoimmune survivor living in Jakarta with her two daughters, while the eldest is in Japan pursuing his bachelor’s degree. She draws on her personal experiences as a cancer caretaker to bring compassion and resilience to her coaching practice.  You can connect with her on Instagram or her website.

4 Comments

  1. Ika Batubara on July 5, 2023 at 4:14 pm

    Thanks for sharing, Christine! I’m blessed 😇



    • Jodi Rosser on July 7, 2023 at 10:50 am

      I am blessed too by Christine’s vulnerable post!



  2. Superdad on July 8, 2023 at 12:57 am

    Thank you Christine… Pray for you always



    • Jodi Rosser on July 10, 2023 at 9:52 am

      So grateful for Christine’s beautiful post!



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