Our hearts were bound up with this child; we felt he was our earthly all, our only source of innocent recreation in this heathen land. But God saw it was necessary to remind us of our error, and to strip us of our only little all. O, may it not be vain that he has done it. May we so improve it that he will stay his hand and say 'It is enough.'*I turned to Hans and said, "No, I can't. I would not be able to say this about the child in my womb." O little did I know about the preciousness that her words were describing.
Emeth is now seventeen-months old. In fact, he is turning a year and a half in two days. As we were saying good night, I watched our "little all" as the sounds of his squeals and the thumping of his fat feet filled the apartment (and probably the neighbors' too). He is our "innocent recreation," though Emeth is not our only and we are not alone in a completely heathen land.
I once heard someone compare evil to black paint. As black is in every masterful painting, evil and suffering is upon the canvas that is this fallen creation. The Lord is the artist. He is sovereign, over rebels and children alike. He is a good Creator; he is kind to his creatures. He does all things well, and makes all things beautiful. The black in our lives is no mistake; every stroke is a part of the whole.
May the Lord grant me a tiny portion of Ann's faith in his goodness and sovereignty! May our present trials not be in vain and may we so improve for his glory.
*John Piper gave a brilliant exhortation on the lives of the Judsons in one of his biographical sermons.