Continuing my series of blogging through Susan Duke’s “Grieving Forward – Embracing Life Beyond Loss”
Chapter Four- The Perpetual Why
“Faith does not always come from quiet contemplation or meditation. It is sometimes born among the raging of questions with no answers, pain with no relief, hope that has no reason to exist” – Randy Becton (Duke, 2006).
I added the quote above because I felt it needed to be said. I’ve often spoke about the “ranting and raving” I have done over the many years, pacing about and asking God, demanding God to give me an answer as to why so many bad things have happened to me. Why me? What have I done? Why can’t things be easier? Why do so many get to through life with so much as a scrape and some have the scars that cover their hearts from so many painful life stories – why? Then the following was said to me: “why not you”.
Some days the guilt of asking why me has driven me to remember that I am not in control of my life story as it was created, just in control of how it is lived out. I choose everyday to get up and make a difference. It’s a choice I don’t nor haven’t made lightly. It is difficult some days to see through the fog. I find that when I focus on living a life of purpose – the need to know why isn’t so important. What I have found to be enlightening is that the more important issue is what do I do now to make a difference. To honor the memory of my daughter and her life – what she stood for – what she believed in. It was all so simple. Love.
One of most profound statements Duke makes in this chapter is about allowing these moments of questioning to block your journey forward. Asking why has always been part of my journey forward, yet in the early days those questions of why where filled with anger and sorrow. Occasionally I have those moments, but more often the times when I ask why, it’s because I want to understand my purpose. The purpose behind so much pain. Because for me there has to be some purpose for it all. I cannot simply believe it happened just because. That is not acceptable to me.
As Duke relates how and when she still questions why her son died, yet his friend was spared. And then after much praying his friend immediately got better. Yet her son died. I too felt that way. So often people miraculously survive events, even those like Brit’s, yet she didn’t. The best medicine couldn’t save her. Why? I’ll never why or at least until I come face to face with God. But I can only come to terms with it by knowing it was her time. We were blessed she made it through the first time when she was 11 months old. We got a great gift for 17 more years. Truly a gift.
One of the points I wanted to make with this chapter is that if you in the space of your journey and you are asking why – the answers won’t come from asking why – they will come from the most unusual sources. You will only be able to see the answers if you are open to receive them. It’s so easy to stay in a constant state of asking why. But it will stonewall your progress. And the blessings that can come will be blocked. And yes, even in the midst of grief – there are blessings.
“But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” – Isaiah 40:31
This is another bible verse that I wrote down that kept me moving forward, when all I wanted to do was forget I existed. I prayed this as a prayer for many many weeks and months after Brit’s death. I still do from time to time. What I know to be true is those very words from Isaiah 40:31. I have hope, I have renewed strength, I have soared upon the wings of an eagle and I have continued on my journey moving forward with great determination.
until next time,