My Story: Hope In Suffering

This is the story of how and why I started writing. I have always loved writing and wanted to be an author since I was 9, but it never took root until...

In 2012, when my oldest was only a few months old and my husband and I were in our second year of marriage, I conceived twin boys. The news was hard to handle, and the following summer was rough, physically and emotionally. How was I supposed to handle three babies born within a year?

Eighteen weeks into the pregnancy I went into labor and my water broke. By the time we reached the hospital, the babies' heart rates were only 2 bpm. There was nothing we could do but wait for the inevitable. As a result of other complications, I lost much of my blood volume and received two blood transfusions. The following weeks were agony. Why did God take my babies? If they were never meant to live, why was I allowed to conceive? What was the purpose of all this pain? I knew that God was and is completely in control of every circumstance. But I had trouble reconciling that truth with His goodness. What good could come out of what just happened?

I never learned the answer to my questions of “why,” but in the following weeks I learned to trust God more. Even though I came no closer to understanding, I began to rely more on God and who He is, and less on the limits of my finite mind.God is good and just at the same time. He is completely in control and fully loving in the midst of pain, even when we don’t understand we can still trust that. That is faith.

A few months later, the random thought to write a devotional came to me. The idea was not something I had ever considered. It was during this time that my daughter went through a phase of wakefulness in the middle of the night. During one of those nights the idea came to me again, along with three verses, so I sat down and wrote. When I was finished I realized that all three, through no plan of mine, were about “hope in suffering.” I took that as my theme and worked on it for the next few years, until it finally reached publication last fall.

It is not a best seller by any means, but that doesn’t matter because it has already made an impact. My mom gave a copy to an unsaved relative who can’t put it down. She shares it with everyone she meets and keeps asking for more copies to give to people she knows who are going through difficult times. And it is not just because of her pride that I am now an author. I have had others tell me that it is making an obvious impact and change in her. And some of the people she has shared it with have asked for more copies to give to their friends and family. The truth that there is hope in suffering is life changing, and contagious.

I really don’t care how popular it is or how many copies I sell. I don’t plan to retire on my profits. This project is about giving others hope, helping people get through their suffering. If I hadn’t lost my babies, I would never have written this book, and the change that is happening wouldn’t be. Only God could take my worst sorrow and use it to reach the lost and hurting that otherwise I could not help. He really does “cause all things to work together for the good of those who love” Him. Romans 8:28 NASB. We don’t have to understand. We just have to believe in Jesus, who has defeated sin and death and so is able to rescue us from them. We just have to trust that God is completely sovereign and perfectly good, and have faith that He knows what He is doing. All we have to do is rely on Him to get us through. He is our hope in suffering.

Because that is my purpose, I have used a pen-name, partly to protect my family, but mainly because this is God's project. I don't want it to be about me and I don't want to receive the glory only He should have. Evelyn Bray means "light hill" and I hope to do just that, be a light for others.

(I apologize, my book is currently unavailable. Hopefully that will change soon.)

1 comment:

  1. Hi Evelyn~
    I got your message and for some reason I'm unable to reply back to you, computers!! :-)
    I sent you a message and yes,I believe you are a No-reply.
    I don't see on your blog where I can contact you, so here is my e-mail address so you can contact me that way. I would love your book!
    I will wait to hear from you and thank you!

    Have a beauty day~