The fall of man has everything to do with my why question. Why Noah? Why sick kids, ever? Why childrens' hospitals? Why heart defects? Why do children die? Why do 5 month old babies die? Why do I have to deal with pain, every. single. day. of. my. life. Why Lord? Why oh why oh why is this our reality? Because man chose to sin. Sin has allowed our world to have pain, sickness, and death. (in our minds, death that is too soon) The fall of man began a slow and very painful existence here on earth. I mean, yes, we have blessed and good lives, don't get me wrong, but look around. Babies are being killed, before they even have a chance to live in the world, babies are born with broken hearts, ailing bodies. Mommies and Daddies have to bury their little ones. Sisters and brothers have to learn to sacrifice so much for their sick sibling. Families move closer to medical centers to be near their doctors, people spend months and months away from their homes to find help for their little ones. There are things like Ronald McDonald Houses, home health care for children, rehab facilities for children, etc etc. HEAR ME when I say that I have only one answer today for my why questions. There, I'm sure, are many other theological answers for my why, but the only one that matters to me today and will help me sleep tonight is this.
His grace is sufficient.
You see, all this fallen world shows us is hardship, death, bitterness, sadness, tyranny and abuse. This world is full of sin, anger, hurt and rage. Whether you have a child who is sick and will struggle their whole life with that ailment or if your sweet, precious little one has gone to heaven, HIS GRACE IS SUFFICIENT. Whether sin has ravaged your family through and through, if you feel as though your body, mind and soul have been abused from day one and there is no way you are material to be loved, or if you just flat out wish you didn't have to get up tomorrow, HIS GRACE IS SUFFICIENT. From the deepest of sins, the heaviness of betrayal, the longing for a child you cannot even bear. HIS GRACE, HIS GRACE. I do not know how to counsel most or any of your heart's issues or needs. I do not even know how to get through my own pain and struggles a lot of the time, but I do know that His grace is sufficient for EVEN ME. His power is made perfect in, EVEN MY WEAKNESS. Do you realize that he died for each and every situation that we could possibly face because of a fallen world? He bore that on his person. He died to provide a way. His rose again to defeat death, sickness, illness and struggle; not here on earth, but for us to join Him in glory. Soak it in.
So, here I am, just begging God for grace because right now all I want to do is hold my baby. All I want to do is stay up all night and rock him. All I want to do is post pictures and brag on all the sweet things he is doing and all the new milestones he is making. His grace covers me. In the moments when I don't feel like I can cry anymore and there I go crying some more, he's there. When I wonder why I had to be the mommy with a "broken one", with a child who's heart never worked right? When I ask God why I have to live every single day with a pain that is so deep and gets deeper every passing day, he simply responds with,
My grace. My grace. My grace is sufficient. My grace is sufficient. For even you. Dear one, for even you. Especially you.
I have had some realizations lately that grace comes in various forms. Grace in my pain doesn't mean that I don't cry or that I don't miss him as much each day or that I can just smile my way through the rest of life. Grace doesn't even mean that this will EVER get easier. What grace in this season of why means that I can find the joy in the mundane. I can rejoice when others are blessed with new little lives. Grace is when I find myself crying at a random moment and my precious little girl crawls up in my lap and says, "mommy mommy" and hugs me tight. Grace is when my husband brings home a bouquet of flowers because he knew without me saying a word that I was struggling that day. Grace is when someone I have never met messages me and tells me what an amazing son I had and how much he helped to change their life. Grace is becoming so lost in worship with my church family that I can actually feel the presence of God and almost reach out and hold my son as I know he is worshiping with us. Grace is when I stop by our church office at least once a week just to be loved on and visit. Grace is when I workout even though I don't want to because I want to better myself for the Lord and I am finally obeying Him in parts of my life I have not been obedient in before. Grace is asking Ava what her baby doll's name is and her replying with, "bubby". Grace is when I curl up in bed and just sob, but as soon as I lay my head on Noah's blanket a calm rushes over me and I go straight to sleep. Grace is laughing for hours with three silly kids on a trampoline on a gorgeous day. (i love my niece and nephews) Grace is knowing that there will never be a day that I will ever have to wonder or worry about my baby Noah. He is whole. He is healed. He is safe and sound in the arms of the Father. Grace is knowing that someday, God will bring about a freshness and a newness of life to our family that we cannot imagine. Grace is seeing a family I know continually worship and praise God even when they feel as though they too might lose a child, simply because of a crooked system and another country's rules. Grace is also the means by which God changes our hearts and our minds. Grace helps us to see anew, life as we know it.
2 Corinthians 12:9
One of my favorite preachers put it this way, "Grace is not a licence to sin. It is permission to change."
Permission to change. Oh how I have asked God to "change me"...when he is saying, ok child, MAKE THE CHANGE. So I find that in saying, "not my will, but yours be done" and then releasing Noah to the Lord, I was able to free myself from the prison of my ways. Life can be done God's way, which doesn't mean it is easy, but means it is worth it. I would never choose for my son to die, ever ever ever, but by grace, I was given permission to change my "I have to have control" sin and let God have his way. It is the hardest thing I've ever done, but it has released more freedom in my life, more passion for His ways and a release from everything I thought was supposed to happen and given Him true reign. Grace has given me permission to not be in control, to not be fighting God everyday for the reigns of my life. He has given me permission to change and truly know Him.
Somehow I feel as though I have not made any sense whatsoever. I pray that grace allows you to see or hear clearly what my heart is trying to convey.
In the moments when I cannot seem to function any longer, I HAVE to dig deeper. I HAVE to find a lesson and stop to hear God's Word for me or I linger in self pity, despair and frustration.
Through God's grace, I have permission to miss Noah, to want so badly to touch him, to imagine what life would be like with him here and then in the same moment, be ok that it's not that way and rejoice in the life I have and know that I have never ever been more eternally minded in my life. Thank you Lord and thank you Noah for helping to shape my view of life and truly living.
I know I could continue on for paragraphs about how his power is made perfect in weakness. Maybe next time.
thank you for your continued prayers for me as I learn how to do life again....