In His Time

On the morning of the 22nd this last week, I awoke to my pre-dawn insomnia fuzz.  As is my habit, I thought about the day, and as I did, I began to craft a killer blog. You see, the 22nd of February is the day that 20 years ago, we held our first born son in our arms as he slipped away to Heaven.

I expounded on this theme, his wonderful 16 years, his charming personality even as he struggled against Leukemia, his good looks, you name it……on and on this exaltation continued.  I had such a blog as to make you all just have to sit down and have a nice cry for a boy most of you never knew.

Then I got up.

Because I have ridiculously low blood pressure along with a number of other idiosyncrasies, when I stand, every thought I’ve had while lying horizontally immediately slides to my feet and is gone.  I spent the rest of the day wandering around trying to remember even what I was thinking about! Try as I might, it was gone……so disturbing is this malady.

But then this morning something C.S. Lewis said about grief popped in my mind (as I was still horizontal).

In his book, “A Grief Observed”, he comments that one of the worst thing about grief is the fact that in time, you even are in danger of losing even the realistic memory of that person.  Our memory tends to weed out the bad and venerate the good.

I’ve had to agree over the years.  Yes, Trevor was the best son ever, but he could be a pain…….he Loved the Lord with all his heart, but that didn’t stop him from trying cigarettes and alcohol with his little Japanese friends while walking to church!  Some well meaning ‘counselors’ have tried the platitude with me that “God was sparing him from something too terrible to imagine”…….(I don’t recommend this tact with a grieving parent, while it may be true, who can know, and words like that certainly don’t make anything better!)  My point is that we forget…..but some of the bad is never forgotten, even after 20 years I can still occasionally feel the loss we experienced from his death. While you may not have experienced the loss of a child, there are other losses, there are other pains that are hard to forget.

We used to sing a chorus called “All things Beautiful”.  The melody croons along with the phrase, “In His time, In His time, He makes all things beautiful in His time!”……….it used to make me mad and I blamed some doe eyed songwriter for creating it. “What a lunatic thought that God would make everything beautiful, that’s CRAZY!” I would pontificate. There is NOTHING beautiful about Trevor suffering and dying!  I will NEVER call it “Beautiful”!.

And then one day I accidentally skimmed across the verse in Ecclesiastes 3:11.  “He has made all things beautiful in it’s time”.  I hate that when it happens, when God slams down my irrefutable ideas with nothing less than His Word.

The day Trevor died, a young MK in Japan responded to his mother’s comment that “Our hearts are broken” with a innocent, “Mom, hearts are soft, they can’t break, they just bruise, so we need to hold Uncle Tony and Aunt Marsha’s hearts very gently in our arms till they heal”

Alas, I don’t believe it’s “in it’s time” yet with the Trevor thing.  I don’t know that while I’m on this earth I can say with any confidence that his death was ‘beautiful’. While I might consider with the misguided ‘friend’ that God was just protecting us from something more terrible, I don’t know that.  But what I do know more and more is that God is always patient with us and our limited processing skills.  I do know that He has held our bruised hearts for these last 20 years while He has has allowed us to scar over some of the pain with joy.  We have 2 children who have made us laugh…….and occasionally fret……..and most of all have made us proud.  They have married the best that Australia has to offer, and even produced two perfect grandchildren.  Trevor’s friends, the ones who helped him experience pre-teen ’sin’ at the vending machines on the way to church, have all gone on to become great Christian leaders to their people, the Japanese………..I look forward to someday in Heaven, when I can agree, “He has made all things beautiful .

In the meanwhile, there is work to do, bills to pay, food to enjoy, love to give, snow to shovel……..and all with the support and joy of friends like you.

As Always, Marsha

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