Some of my readers know but many do not- our family suffered a great tragedy this last Saturday. My 6-year old had a run-in with our lawn mower and we had to amputate his foot. It’s been a horrifically long several days for us. My heart and head was just beginning to find a new normal for our family from our daughter’s illness and amputation last fall… then Covid… then this. The mind reels and you find yourself questioning everything. I apologize if I’m not as active on this page or my website for a bit. There is so much to process and work through that anything additional feels insurmountable.
Actually it all feels insurmountable. It feels unfair. It feels unjust and unmerciful. I’m not afraid to say I’m mad at God right now. I’m questioning His Fathering abilities. I find my heart distrustful of His promises and my prayers have run dry. Fortunately we are blessed with a support system that has locked shields around us so completely in faith and works that (for better or worse) I couldn’t run even if I wanted to.
But I do desperately want to run and hide. When the terrors that strike by day have completed their massacre and I find myself bewildered and afraid, utterly drained, looking out at a horizon that I no longer recognize. An entire future that bears huge black holes of unknowns. And my child heart longs to run to my Father- yet my mama heart lingers in the recesses because quite frankly He doesn’t feel safe right now.
I’m learning over and over that God isn’t ‘safe’ – at least not in the way we want Him to be. His way is not safe. It is dangerous. There is loss. So. Much. Loss. More, often, than could possibly be anticipated, planned for, or overcome. Safe, as we know it, comes on the other side of heaven. Safe, as we want it, awaits those after death. Safe, as the world would define it, doesn’t apply to God. It doesn’t apply to this life. No He is most definitely not safe.
But He is good- always that cliched saying- it makes me sick to hear right now. Because good for Him isn’t always ‘good’ for us. And I have to get my head around that. His good, is GOOD. With parameters and characteristics and divine insinuation that we cannot possibly imagine. There are no words in all the world’s languages that could fully define what God’s goodness actually is- What it feels like to us mere mortals. The fires of Yahweh’s divine good purification cannot help but singe. How could we as mere pots of clay ever think we could withstand the furnace of His good sanctification? No- We are utterly destroyed. We are consumed wholly in the fire of His goodness. And I will tell you, His ‘good’ very often feels the exact opposite. It hurts, singes, tears, rip apart, and separates. Like my son’s foot was.
It is confounding to think that God’s best for Jonah involves removing a limb. It is frustrating to think God’s best for my daughter involves such facial deformity and half a leg. I will never understand it. It will take me a while to accept it. It will take me longer to not ache over it. God’s goodness is an enigma to my humanity. It is a confounding thing.
So yes, I’m mad. I’m downright furious. Because anger feels like the only emotion strong enough to overcome the grief that has consumed our family… again. I question God. I yell at Him. I scream at Him. And currently I’m not particularly talking to Him. I am angry.
Yet even though I don’t want to and I’m intentionally not looking, I see His hands through this. I see my friends and family, strangers from afar, and people from all over the world who I’ll never meet holding this broken and disabled family up. The tatters that I feel my heart is in are being meticulously cared for and looked over by so many people. The words that I cannot use to pray with anymore are being prayed over me.
So, yes. I may not be around for a bit. As Job, I’m in sackcloth and ashes. But God makes beauty from ashes. It will never be as I thought. It won’t even be like I imagined or what I wanted. I guess this Walk demands all those sacrifices too. But we keep walking. Resentful at times- yes. Frustrated and angry and wholly disillusioned by the height and breadth and danger of the road- yes. At times being carried bodily by others because we are so completely incapacitated.
But we continue on. Because THIS. IS. what our faith demands. And this IS the road to heaven. Missing limbs, broken hearts, and all. 💔