Thursday, August 04, 2011


A friend's husband passed away yesterday. The two of them were so close, devoted to each other and family. Having raised their children, retired from jobs, they were in the era of their lives where they had the time to notice the beauty in things, not from the interstate at 65 mph careening toward work, but slowly, easily, where they could stop, sit, reflect and enjoy the simple loveliness of a tree. A grandchild. A spouse's smile. And most especially, the true beauty of time itself. It was to be the time in their lives where they got to lie down in the grass or sit in their recliner or on their porch swing and recognize, fully, that they were not wasting time, but enjoying and appreciating time.

My first thought was "there's always a reason things happen". A paraphrase of a popular scripture in Romans, "And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose."

It's a comforting concept to fall back on, an answer when there is no answer. For those of us who study God's word there are a googlezillion other scriptures that convey that message. We believe it, have faith in it, recite it while shaking our heads at some misfortune or sad event.

In the face of this kind of loss however, my human need for understanding, for putting things in their proper perspective rears its head. I know what the Word says, but what could the reason possibly be? A woman loses the love of her life just when the sweetness of life was emerging? A woman who says things like "Love is like a violin. The music may stop now and then, but the strings remain forever... '"

I don't get it but I don't have to. The word "but" is what gets me in trouble. I know what the Word says BUT. But I have to understand. The truth is I don't. I, me, myself, this isn't about me. (Got that revelation on the treadmill this morning.) Again, He pointed out that I'm but a speck. Important to Him but in perspective, a speck. Unless I'm omnipotent I don't have enough information to understand what the reason could be. Same as any other situation - fact gathering is a necessity before understanding and an informed decision can be made.

And so it is that it occurs to me it's my own ego that engages me and says "Oh girl you have to figure this out. Get it to work. Make sense. Put it in a cubbyhole."

Nooooo, I don't.

There's nothin' worse than an egotistical 51 year old white blonde woman. I don't want to be her. Nope. So my role is to support and sympathize, pray for the one who passed and his family.

And what a relief that turns out to be. Big ol' burden off my shoulders, trying to figure God's stuff out. I'm leaving it to Him. I have a hunch He's capable. There are lots of things that He asks me to help Him with even though He's capable of doing it Himself. This isn't one of them.


Allie and Pattie said...

Thanks C. I needed this after a night of no sleep trying to make sense of so many things.

Bee said...

I needed to hear this, too. Like you, I study the Word. And I believe it. But, also like you, that human in me wants it explained and properly filed where it doesn't worry me any more; where I know for sure that the heartbreak isn't just this ugly, black end to something.

If only we could look at the beautiful tapestry He's weaving from the front instead of the knotted up back. But if we could, where would faith fit in.

OggieMamma said...

I'm glad you listened to what God was saying because my own thoughts were so jumbled and my own brain so busy trying to find reasons for this friend's loss and so many other things that are going on in the lives of friends and family, that try as He might to speak to me, I couldn't hear Him over all the clanging and clattering.

Doodles said...

Suffice to say I still don't get it...........BUT then again I guess I'm not supposed to.