This is something I wrote to a friend recently. It seems appropriate to reiterate...
"...This past Christmas evening, he and I were sitting on the couch talking. Regarding his illness and imminent demise, I told him how thankful I am for the eternal hope we have in Christ and the peace it brings in the face of tragedy and dread. He agreed and said that in his own strength he'd have been such a coward with what he's endured, but it's Jesus Christ who has made him strong and able to face and fight his cancer. Thankful, though I am for eternal hope, my heart aches at the prospect of living out the rest of my life without my precious dad. I know it's the natural progression of life - we can't have our parents for ever...but who’s ever ready to let them go?
God prepares us, though, for what he allows in our lives. My prayers have changed for dad. Oh, how I used to soak my pillow with tears and beg God not to take him yet. I didn't feel I could live without his warmth and wisdom. Now, while I don't want to live without it, I don't feel so desperate. While I ask God to consider the desires of my heart, it's with peacefulness that I concede that He is holy, eternal, and His plans are perfect. Now I ask that as He carries out His purposes, He will be merciful and gentle. No suffering for dad, please. I was reading Habakkuk recently... the only thing that stood out (it jumped out!), were four little words... His ways are eternal..."
That pretty much answers the "Why's" of our lives. When we don't understand, we have to remember that "His ways are higher than our ways" and have eternal value. Granted, that's easier said than done when you're in the midst of your Why?! moment. Take it from me! My transition from desperately pleading to peacefully conceding has been several years in the making. Finally, lesson learned where dad's cancer is concerned, but I'm sure there will be future Why?! instances where I have to learn it all over again (I can be dense that way - and full of yeah, but's!).
- Pam O'Brien
- I'm a wife, mom, and grandma living in rural Vermont. I spend 40 hours of my week working outside my home and away from my garden, but am nevertheless passionate about healthy eating and sustainable living. By sourcing nutrient-dense food from local farms and avoiding processed foods, we are realizing how our over health is being impacted for the better. I’m excited to have you join me as I share what we’re learning and invite you to offer your insights in the comments. “…giving thanks in all circumstances…” 1 Thess 5:16-18