Thursday, September 2, 2010

head over heals (3.25.10)

I must confess I am madly in love with someone I have never met. And I fall more in love everyday. Today Gideon was doing something funky. I am not sure if he was doing pregame stretches or what but he has been making his presence known today. I loved it. I love every minute of it. And I love him. Every day I love him more. As much as I love my son, it is only a small drop of rain compared to the ocean of how much our Father in heaven loves him and loves me. Contemplating this love, forces me to think about difficult reality.

Why if God loves me this much, must I go through this pain. If He loved me an iota of what I love Gideon and He loves me so many times more, why must I go through this dark place. Why doesn’t he just rescue me and make it go away?

I am not so naive as to believe I am the first one to ask these questions, volumes have been written on the subject. But somehow, when you have to face it yourself, thousands more books about it won’t make it easier. I know God can heal my son. I pray in faith that He can. But what if Gideon is not healed? What if we must face loosing our tiny son before we really even have him? Is God still in that? Does God, as some suggest, guarantee physically healing to those who ask in faith. We are asking. If Gideon is not healed is it because we didn’t have enough faith? Because we didn’t pray right? Would God will for our son to have so short a life with us? Or did we just not get it right somehow?

Now, I am no spiritual giant, but I remember that Jesus said something about faith like a mustard seed…

And the other alternative, that God would will this kind of pain in our lives just doesn’t seem congruent with a God who loves us as He does.

I don’t know if God wills this kind of pain in our lives, but I am suspicious he allows it. Because God’s will for us to draw close to him and sometimes, I suspect that means rivers filled with pain and not just plenty must come in to our lives. We know that his word says in Jeremiah that He knows that plans for us, to prosper us. Is it possible to prosper we must go through some thorns too? Like that cademons call song “I had to walk the rocks to see the Mountain View”; maybe our journey must have those painful moments because of what is waiting on the other side. And we do know how it ends. Us with Him. The ultimate healing. And I am filled with wonder that my sins are washed away.

Perhaps as Angie Smith suggests, life is not about healing, but about bearing our wounds for Christ, as He bore our sins to the cross. Bearing these wounds and sharing them, sharing our love and sharing his love with this broken body that is called the church. Physical miraculous healing, God does, or perhaps sometimes does not do because He is God, sovereign and holy. God so powerful that we could not survive in our human bodies at the sight at Him. Moses himself had to be hid in the cleft of the rock while God passed by. How wonderful that a God who could crush us with his justice and holiness chooses instead to hold us with his mercy and grace. And maybe it is this mercy and grace that knows when we need the showstopper miracle and when we need to know the miracle of being held. He sees the end and knows far better that I do what I need. I suspect that His end for our story is far more creative and wonderful than mine.

We pray every day for God to give us what we want. A healed and whole Gideon. But we have also begun to pray for something more. For the first time in my life I can say and mean it to God that I want my son healed and I want this pain to go away. “But more than that God, I want to be as near to your presence as I can be.” Whatever that means. So will my son not be healed because I haven’t said God WILL heal him and instead say God please do…but I will trust you even if you don’t?

If in the end, I am with Him, close to Him, I think I will be like Job, put rightly in his place after chapters of presenting what he would argue to God, and just stand in awe as those questions fade to dust and I just get lost in his presence. Job only heard God from a cloud. Someday we will see him face to face.

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