It’s Complicated! When Our Questions Go Unanswered!
Honestly, Valentine’s Day was a little challenging, and for me that’s a big deal. Valentine’s Day is one of my favorite holidays. I look forward to it, I love it, and I am usually excited about it’s coming, but this year was different. For some reason, I just kept thinking about the card my dad got me when I was a little girl, probably because it was the only Valentine’s Day Card that I still have left.
See I lost my dad when I was 13 years old, he was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in August, and he was gone in November, four short months! When you lose a parent at a young age, you always wonder what you missed. Dad teaching you how to drive, or walking you down the aisle at your wedding, or conversations with dad, talks about how to navigate life, the kind of job you want, or if you should buy a house. I wonder about my day, the grandfather who would spoil my daughter rotten, and whose eyes light up when he sees them. For me, all of those things can only happen in my dreams, and there are times when I think about that, and it makes me a little sad.
Although, even the sadness I feel in losing him so early, I have to admit that in some strange way we had a lifetime together. In those 13 years, we took all kinds of trips, had all kinds of talk, we sang, we read, we had critical conversations, and he made me think. He took me to New York all the time, he took me to plays, we met famous people, we had lots of fun. I remember the time when he took me to see Michael Jackson, my favorite singer, and I don’t know who was shyer, Michael Jackson, or me. My dad and I had tons of precious memories together, and they were absolutely amazing, I often reflect on those days and smile. Losing him still hurts, and 13 years to me, just wasn’t enough time, period!
There are times in your life that you can’t control, times when you wish you had the power to make things go another way, but you don’t! On many occasions, I have questioned God for taking my dad so early, and I am sure I am not the only one who has questioned God’s decision making. I am sure there is not a cancer patient, who at least for a second doesn’t wonder why them, or a parent, who doesn’t lament over a disability, or loss of a child, or a person who has lost a job, a marriage, or something else they held dear or thought was necessary.
It is natural to question the things that we don’t understand. It is times like these, where there are no direct answers to our question. When we must look at God as our Father who can, and will console His children. In these times, I think of Jesus sleeping on the ship when His disciples are completely freaking out, in the midst of the storm, and with “peace be still”, everything returns to normal, or Mary and Martha who yelled at Jesus for not coming fast enough to save their brother from death, only to bring him back to life. Just as, a parent, doesn’t answer every question from their child, there are times when things must be exactly the way they are, and no explanation is given. Things are put in motion for reasons we cannot begin to understand, and may never know, and as painful as that may be at times, it is true.
Scriptures fill my heart like, “My ways, are not your ways, and my thought are not your thoughts”, and “For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God” quickly comes to mind! God’s ways are just different, and I don’t always like how they go. When I am ushered in front of the throne of God, I often go asking, questioning, but inherently knowing, in some way, this painful experience fits. Balancing out my experiences with God’s unfailing love and His promise to never leave me or forsake me, I go back to purpose, and I end with destiny. He does have a plan!
For I know the plans I have for you, “declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. – Jeremiah 29:11
In quiet prayer, I take my heart, the pain, and the unsettling feeling of not understanding and/or liking some turn my life has taken. I put my cares into a heart filled envelope and hand it to God, who I love, with three words written on it, “I Trust YOU”, I take it to the altar and give it to God, knowing that His plan is always perfect!