Someone wonderful died this week and it's been on my mind ever since.
When we moved to the Midwest, we searched and searched through the good and bad to find a church that we could call home. The truth is, we didn't know any other way to meet people. We were out of college stage and we'd been married a couple years. Frequenting bars to lurk on people we might ask to hang out with us? It felt desperate. And weird.
We're Christian. Not specifically any denomination to claim, as we've literally visited or attended services in just about every Protestant denomination you can speak of. We like good music (a requirement) and a good community of people who are caring, considerate, and generous with their lives and actions. We also wanted to befriend people that we'd want our children to be around... because I was pregnant about five minutes after we touched down in Chicago from Germany.
This church we found. It's Lutheran (a new one for us). We have met some great people who have been so supportive of our heartaches and triumphs these couple years. We're thrilled that all of our living children will grow up with friends whose parents we admire and respect. One of the pastors of this church we attend was diagnosed with Stage 4 Carcinoma in November at age 55. And this past Saturday, he joined Andrew in heaven.
I shed quite a few tears over this. First of all, he was one of those realists. He always spoke from his heart and from a different perspective. He didn't appear to be overly conservative, but offered a fresh outlook on Christianity and life. He fit our style and although he didn't know us personally, we admired him greatly.
Fast forward to the next day, Sunday. The lead pastor spoke and basically admitted that he just thought for sure that God would heal him. That he'd be speaking on Palm Sunday and not him standing up there in his place. The message was about When God lets you down. Boy, did I feel the heat from that message and the well of tears from Andrew's death was refilled. Fresh. I appreciated his perspective. He didn't offer excuses for God not coming through. He just plain said that although God can let us all down, he still loves us. And to be honest, what choice do we have?
It brought me to tears thinking about Andrew. We laid in bed the other night talking about this message and how we prayed more for Andrew probably than anything in our lives. And yet, we feel God let us down. He's also been a great source of comfort and has been the center to finding wonderful friends. We all experience loss and sadness in life. We'll all die. I will just never accept death happening in such devastating ways and to such young people.
One year ago, almost to the day, I wrote a post about prayer. Not a lot has changed. I still pray, but it's definitely taken a beating. We still pray for B's health and life, but I'm not sure that really has much weight. We pray for peace, most of all. After all, what choice do we have?
6 days ago