Finding God

Monday, April 13, 2009

Today on twitter I heard that another blogger's baby died this week. That's 2 children in one week. And while I did not personally know either of these sweet children, their deaths echo in my mind and heart.

My husband asked me today what I thought about this. If I thought it was part of God's plan, or if it reaffirmed my faith in any way. And I said no.

I know that shows so little faith on my part, but I'm having such trouble finding God in this. I know He's there, I know there's a plan, but two young children in one week? Two tiny bodies, gone from this earth in within 6 days of each other? I just don't see God there.

I just don't.

I see God in the $25,100 donated to the March of Dimes in Maddie's name by those who miss her. But I also see $25,100 worth of anguish and sadness.

I see Him in the contests and organizations to help these families. But I also see how much we all wish that we didn't have a reason to donate to the Spohrs and Myers.

I see Him in the way that people are moved to hold their children tighter today and remember how precious life is. But I also see how hurt we all are.

It's just not enough. I know that all that money will help save lives of other premature babies, and for that I am grateful, but the cost was too great. $25,100 is a lot of money, but it is no match for the value of a child, for Maddie. It's not enough. There isn't enough money to be enough.

I do have faith, but I do not have understanding and maybe it's because it's not mine to have. I don't control the heavens and the earth, I don't get to make the decisions. But I long to understand why He has chosen this path. Why two families and thousands of people are deeply troubled, worried, and most of all, sad beyond measure. I pound my fists in anger, sadness and frustration because I just don't get it. How could this possibly be worth it? How can there be any reason that these families needed to lose their children.

Tomorrow Madeline will be buried in California. I don't know if I see God there.

Maybe I'm just not looking hard enough.


Redneck Mommy said...

I struggle with my faith too when it comes to children dying.

I don't see God in death. I believe God weeps when a child dies.

But like you, I see God in the humanity and love surrounding myself and all the families who ever have to bear this burden of loss.

Sometimes though, I just can't see God no matter how hard I try.

Today is one of those days.

Pgoodness said...

Tanis said it better than I ever could have. Exactly.

Anonymous said...

When a child dies I know the heartbreak the parents and family go through. But I also know that God has chosen to spare these children from a life of pain and suffering and takes them directly into His arms. How is this a bad thing?! They will never, EVER know any more pain but will always and only be in their Savior's arms forever. This is a wonderful and amazing thing. I see nothing but His love in this.
Praying right now!
Isaiah 40:28-31 Hast thou not known? hast thou not heard, that the everlasting God, the LORD, the Creator of the ends of the earth, fainteth not, neither is weary? there is no searching of his understanding. He giveth power to the faint; and to them that have no might he increaseth strength. Even the youths shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall: But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.
Prayer BearsMy email address

LilSass said...

I'm right with you; I don't get a second of this. I had been reading the Madeline posts this weekend and then the second announcement hit the "airwaves" today and I said outloud, WHAT??? ANOTHER BABY?" and I just couldn't believe it.

It's awful and it makes me sick and I don't understand any of it.

AB said...

This is beautful...painful, but beautiful.

Sue G said...

Sometimes I think we miss seeing God because of all the searching we do to understand Him.

As you know, Katie, I have a heart for pediatric cancer. It touches me so when I hear of another child spending his/her childhood fighting that insidious disease...knowing they are being robbed of the innocence and freedom of childhood by facing battles no child should have to endure.

I used to think that when I got to Heaven, my first conversation with God would be to find out why.

And then I realized that if Heaven is really all that we hope for, all that we are promised, well, those questions and answers would not matter.

But, they do matter here in the only world we know. And, sadly, I don't think there is an answer good enough to balance the devastation of childhood losses.

So, I stopped asking why. Instead, I ask what I can do.

And then I just trust that God knows what He is doing...and accept that He understands His plan and our pain.

terrifik said...

The post is maybe better titled Searching for God since there doesn't seem to be any finding going on. We used to think God was in the clouds with harps and angels, but now that we can see he is not there, where do we look next?

God supposedly made everything, even made the devil what he is. If God is perfect, and does perfect work, then God must have meant and intended for these results. Never mind free choice, these babies have no choices to make.

Oh, hold it, I forgot. First God made the Earth for Adam and Eve - then later he changed the plan so all of us would be here making global warming. Dare I point out that the universe is already refusing to unfold quite the way God actually planned it? Noah was something, eh, how did he ever manage to get two of everything together on the Ark without every noticing the earth was not flat or that he had circumnavigated it looking for breeding pairs before the flood? Maybe the thrill of breaking wild dinosaurs to the saddle distracted him.

The white haired old man God story has never worked too well for me, it seems as full of holes as the Easter Bunny, Santa Claus and the Tooth Fairy. I have the same lack of faith in all of them.

I see God as a collection of laws and forces of nature, not as a conscious entity that decides which prayers to answer and which to ignore. At least my God is consistent, gravity is always on, the sun usually rises every day. This God that many of you worship who apparantly is unreliable, unpredictable, and too mysterious to understand seems to be cruel, fearful, and not just a little bit psychotic to me.

I am comforted by sunrises, sunsets, sitting on the grass, smelling flowers, beauty, nature. None of these requires that I forgive them for allowing people to suffer.

I there were truly a God of love out there, I would be interested, but so far I only see a God of fear, and whole civilizations having a fear of God that drives their faith in hopes of appeasing him. God seems to have a nasty dark side, and occassionaly even lets the devil play mean games with some of his most faithful people, like poor Job.

The personal God many of you pray to, the one with all those mysterious ways, seems to me to be little more than a four year old with an ant farm, selecting ants to do experiments on for no particular reason in choosing which ant.

These man made Gods that the churches have constructed were useful for controlling a vast horde of uneducated heathens, but if they actually speak to you then you are statistically more likely to be schizophrenic than on a mission from God.

As for believing that all my ancestors and dead acquaintances will meet me at the Pearly Gate, I don't get how this could work out well. I suppose its why Catholics reject divorce. Imagine being "rewarded" in heaven by sitting down with all of your ex wives at once!! People would be thinking up new sins just to avoid this.

I maintain that if you get right to the bottom of most peoples "faith" you find they are trying to be faithful out of the fear of god and the fear of the imagined consequences of not being "faithful". Were it not for the threat of everlasting hell, most of them apparently think they couldn't behave themselves for a minute. I think this is why old people find God (unresolved fear of death) and criminals find God (so they can get those sins forgiven that can't be undone now)

Me, I do the best I can every day since I can't count on any forgiveness after I sin, and if God wants me to listen to him then he knows where to find me. I assume being all powerful he can get my attention if he wants it.

Anonymous said...

I have a nephew, who was a twin, who died of SIDS at three months. Of couse, everyone asked why, didn't understand and grieved. That was over 20 years ago. We all still ask why, don't understand and grieve. BUT our faith in God is strong. His ways aren't ours....Throughout those years, we have seen and experienced many things, relationships that might not have taken place had Michael not died. We choose to believe that God is using our experience for our good and the good of others. My brother in law was a parochial grade school principal and now administrator of a parochial high school. He has said many times that the experience with his own son has given him many opportunites to witness and to share his faith with others. Our entire family has chosen to use the experience to glorify God. Granted, this DID NOT happen right away.....and there are still family occasions that slam us in the face, especially those that involve the surviving twin. I have noticed that a great many of the families of the childhood cancer webpages also speak of their strong faith in God as carrying them through their dark times. I'm sure there are many who wouldn't agree with me, but I'm not looking for faith, it's there all the time. It just has highs and lows at various times in my life.

Sorry this is coming thru as anonymous, can't get the passord right!