In the same way the Spirit also helps our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we should, but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words; Romans 8:26

I recall very vividly the day I got the news that we had lost custody of our children. I lost it. I fell to my knees and I wailed. I didn’t have the words to even pray. All I could do was sob. So many times over the past few months I have been so desperate and in such agony that I sob uncontrollably. It only last for a few minutes and I catch my breath and recheck my faith and get up and fight again. My significant other has confided in me that he used to get frustrated with me that my immediate response to difficult situations is to first collapse as if all hope is lost and I have lost the will to fight. He has said he has come to understand that I always come back stronger and ready to fight and so he has learned to cope through my weird process.

I would tell you it’s not my chosen process. I am without control at those moments. I literally feel as though I have been punched in the gut, all hope has been lost, and through my despair I am wailing for Christ to remove this thorn from my side. And then as quickly as it has started, I regain my strength and feel as though I have been renewed enough to continue and sometimes I see with better clarity, not perfect clarity, but better clarity.

I heard the Bible verse above discussed today as I was driving home from some early Saturday morning errands (triggered by my need for a caramel mochiato now that I have progressed enough in my healing process to be trusted with my car – Oh how I’ve missed my morning coffee).

Through all these struggles I have questioned how will God help me if I can’t even muster the words to ask for help? We are told to bring everything to God in prayer but what about those moments when we don’t have the words or when we can’t articulate our thoughts enough to express our deep needs? Will he simply pass us by assuming if we needed him we would ask? I don’t have the words to express the complete relief and gratitude I have knowing that when I am least able to speak for myself, Christ himself will be my intercessor, he will bring our prayers before God himself “with groans too deep for words”. I am without words adequate enough to express what a gift this is, the deepest of compassions.

I am trying to understand and express, to put into context, what the Bible is telling us where it stays “with groans too deep for words”. Christ doesn’t just speak to God on our behalf but he empathizes with us, he bears our pain, and brings it before God for us.

Those moments when we simply cannot move past our grief and despair, we have Christ who will bring our pain before God on our behalf.

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