When Bad News Comes: Holding on to God's Unchanging Character

Updated: May 18, 2021

By Kim Caifano

God's Brave Women - Kim's Story


I sat in my son’s doctor’s office alone, staring at the library of books in front of me. The titles were telling of the diagnosis I was about to hear.


The doc walked in, gave me a warm smile, and proceeded to read through an 18-page report.


The final page revealed his condition. It was heavy news to digest, and yet it wasn’t a total shock. If anything, there was relief. We’d been through 12 years of doctor’s appointments, specialist consults, and educational programs that seemed to lead us to nothing - at least no formal diagnosis that we could do anything about.


I stared at the final page, my face showing no emotion.


“Are you ok?” she asked.


“Yes,” I responded.


“Numb” would have been the better descriptive word, but I figured that was close enough to being “ok.”


At this point in the year, I had gotten quite used to difficult news being delivered to me. Our family had endured much in the time span of a mere 12 months. A lot changed.


- My mom lost her health (which had been previously fine) to the point of being unable to walk, in constant pain, and dismissed from Mayo Clinic straight into a nursing home.


- Department restructuring at work meant the loss of a job and community I absolutely loved. It rocked my identity, changed our church life experience, and caused the loss of friends that had become like family.


- One of our sons developed a sudden onset of gross motor tics, and we spent the year at various appointments with a final diagnosis we are still sorting out.


- Cancer came. My sister’s husband was diagnosed with stage 4 lymphoma, and our lives suddenly turned into chemo treatments, CAR-T therapy, and lots of trips out to Seattle to help their family.


- My next-door neighbor and dear friend developed a brain tumor. My cousin’s wife developed breast cancer.


- My brother began experiencing a loud noise in his ear that he describes as the volume of a dentist drill.


- My grandfather passed away, and he was a treasured, dear man who I loved very much.


- Then. Then! Covid-19 came. And a quarantine.


Indeed, a lot changed. But I knew one thing did not.


Hebrews 13:8 declares with great boldness that “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.”


In all honesty, I cannot say that my heart was always beautifully oriented in Elisabeth Elliot fashion, humbly receiving these difficulties with openness and a surrendered, accepting heart. There has been a lot of wrestling, a lot of questioning, a lot of complaining, and so much crying my tears could have created a lake.


But I can tell you with great assurance that amidst my toddler-like tantrums, I knew I had an anchor because I knew I had an unchanging God.


 

"In all honesty, I cannot say that my heart was always beautifully oriented in Elisabeth Elliot fashion, humbly receiving these difficulties with openness and a surrendered, accepting heart... But I can tell you with great assurance that amidst my toddler-like tantrums, I knew I had an anchor because I knew I had an unchanging God."

 

In the middle of these trials I did two things. First, I kept living life, simply showing up, intentionally parenting, meeting with friends, and traveling.


Second, I chose to launch my speaking and writing business. The timing may seem odd, but here’s why: I saw how much unrest and fear was occurring as Covid took its toll on people’s lives. I wanted others to find rest in what is known, what is sure, in what is true and unchanging.


So, I chose to get past my shyness and my fear and begin sharing the message I had known throughout the last year of trials. There is an Anchor. There is One who remains unchanged when change is all around us. His name is Jesus Christ.


And it’s not just the fact that He is unchanging that brings comfort. It’s the accompanying truth of His character. He is a good God, a loving God, a wise One, a Ruler, the Lover of our souls.


 

"And it’s not just the fact that He is unchanging that brings comfort. It’s the accompanying truth of His character. He is a good God, a loving God, a wise One, a Ruler, the Lover of our souls."

 

So as anxiety rose and quarantine isolation occurred and death and grief swept the nation and the world, I began to write and speak.


I’d share about worship songs that were on repeat. I’d write about reciting out loud that God reigns. He is sovereign. He is in control. I’d remind myself that nothing about Him or His character was any different than it was before 2019-2020 occurred.


People often come up to me and say I’m so brave to have launched this business and carried on with everyday life during a time of so many trials. They think I lack fear.


But bravery is misunderstood. It’s entirely intertwined with fear, it’s just that you don’t let the fear stop you.


 

"People often come up to me and say I’m so brave to have launched this business and carried on with everyday life during a time of so many trials. They think I lack fear. But bravery is misunderstood. It’s entirely intertwined with fear, it’s just that you don’t let the fear stop you."

 

I’m going to keep living fully, showing up, and growing this business because I have too much of a good message to share. It is stated perfectly by the wonderful 1800’s preacher Charles Spurgeon:


“Oh, there is in contemplating Christ, a balm for every wound! In musing on the Father, there is a quietus for every grief and in the influence of the Holy Spirit there is a balsam for every sore. Would you lose your sorrows? Would you drown your cares? Then go plunge yourself in the Godhead’s deepest sea; be lost in His immensity; and you shall come forth as from a couch of rest, refreshed and invigorated. I know nothing which can so comfort the soul, so calm the swelling billows of grief and sorrow; so speak peace to the winds of trial, as a devout musing upon the subject of the Godhead.”


Dear One, wherever you are at in this moment, may you find that to be so.


 

Brave Woman Manifesto


Make sure to check back next week as another courageous Sister shares her story!


And by the way...


You are Brave!


No matter what you are facing, God has made you in His image, which means you are full of His strength and power. I would love to connect with you more and give you a FREE gift - the BRAVE WOMAN MANIFESTO: Five Things to Tell Yourself When Life Gets Hard. Click HERE to sign up for my monthly newsletter and you’ll receive the FREE Manifesto, as well as recent blog posts, updated resources and personal details delivered only to my lovely email tribe.


AS A BONUS… Subscribers will also be the first to receive news regarding the BRAVE WOMEN BIBLE STUDY coming out later this year and a sample chapter! *insert happy dance here* SIGN UP for more info on the study’s release and availability!


 

About Kim


Kim is a writer, speaker, and content creator at KimCaifano.com. Her mission is to let the reader and listener know they are not alone in their struggles. Kim takes her real-life, varied experiences as a woman, friend, wife, and mom to authentically tell her story on her own media platforms. In addition, she writes and speaks for other organizations, including women's retreats, marriage events, mom groups, and communications/media functions.


She reaches thousands through her writing, social media content, speaking engagements, and newsletters. Her social content can be viewed on Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest.


Her newest business endeavor will be announced on all of her platforms on May 26, so stay tuned!