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Embracing Your Unexpected Life

March 3, 2021

By Kristin Milner

Embracing your unexpected life can feel hard. No one loves unpleasant surprises. But God truly is working all things together for our good as we trust him.

My Unexpected Life Story

A few days before an anxiously awaited doctor appointment, I made my husband pretend I was the patient and he was the doctor. The results from several tests were in, and I was afraid of my reaction.

We were prepared to hear bad news. However, I wanted to practice what bad news would sound like. I wanted to hear my husband, someone I loved and trusted, walk into a room and tell me bad news out loud. This might help me figure out my feelings. Somehow, I felt as if hearing it several times in advance would make it less hurtful and real.

It didn’t. The doctor had bad news, but he didn’t deliver it how we practiced. A year later, I still don’t know how to process it all. Multiple sclerosis is never what one dreams or plans for.

Learning to Embrace Your Unexpected Life

Maybe you’ve been there. All the circumstances in your mind aren’t turning out how you planned. Even when we work to prepare for the changes, unexpected life change can be difficult to process. When we think life will look a certain way, it’s difficult when that changes.

So, what do we do when things just aren’t what we imagined or hoped? What do we do when our new reality is just too shocking?

A Bible Lesson on Embracing the Unexpected

For the Israelites, all they knew was a life of slavery. They put their hope of getting out of slavery in Moses. That change of circumstance, though a positive change, was still difficult. 

Their disbelief and negative attitudes cost them forty years of roaming in the desert. They never saw the Promised Land. Nor did Moses.

However, God is faithful. Joshua, one of the twelve spies sent by Moses many years prior to view the promised land believed in God’s unforeseen promises. He used Joshua to continue through the hardship of taking over what God had already faithfully promised. A land God had already given them. They needed only to have faith to claim what was already theirs.

Embracing Your Unexpected Life

Maybe your unexpected journey also looks like a health crisis. The trails of caring for a sick child, spouse or parent can weigh a marriage down.  

With the sudden impacts of COVID, perhaps your family is suddenly suffering from financial issues. Although faultless, you might still find yourself growing bitter towards your spouse.

Too often, God’s promises don’t look how we imagine. They are scary and unknown. Yet, His promises to us remain. Even more, they are filled with redemption and restoration to those who trust along the way.

He is trustworthy. Even in the darkest of times. When you choose to trust God day by day, you will be embracing your unexpected life with his help.

Wife Step: Pause and reflect on all the ways God has been near to you on your unexpected journey.

How to embrace your unexpected life.

Kristin is the pastor wife to her hubby and best friend, Tim. Together they have three beautiful girls, and an unusually gorgeous cat named Scooter. Kristin helped start Essential Church in Huntsville, Al, where her husband is the lead pastor. She loves to encourage women with Biblical truth and funny stories at www.kristinmilner.com.


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  1. Kristin, thank you for sharing your unexpected health diagnosis. My heart dropped when I read your words. My Dad had MS, so unfortunately, I know all too well about MS. Do you know what I thought about when I took your advice and paused to reflect how God has shown up? I thought about my Dad and how my mom was so committed through all the years he had MS. She showed me how to persevere when life throws unexpected stuff our way. Do you know what else I did? I prayed for you because anyone who has MS, God puts a certain tenderness in my heart for them. May our Lord bless you abundantly.

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