Since Evie and now Charlie passed away, I've had two statements in my mind that I felt I needed to be able to say emphatically and confidently, and mean them with all my heart. I don't know exactly what along the way lead me to believe that these statements were the ultimate in having a spirit yielded and obedient to God's will, but I have, up until very recently.
I needed to be thankful for the death of my children and straight up say, I am thankful that they died.
Certainly this comes from Ephesians 5:20 which says, Giving thanks for all things to God the Father and our Lord Jesus Christ. We are supposed to be thankful for all things. But, it never sat very well with me that I thought I had to be thankful for something that God doesn't even like.
God isn't a fan of death. It's the whole reason His original plan involved perfection in the garden and His plan of redemption involved eternal life with Him. Even God doesn't like death, so why should I have to be thankful for something that He wants to eliminate completely?
But while I don't have to say "I am thankful my babies died" (that just sounds awful anyway), I do need to be thankful and can be thankful, for the many good things surrounding their deaths, starting of course with the fact that the resurrected Jesus makes it possible for me to have hope that I will see them again.
I can also be thankful for the good things that have come from their deaths - the person their deaths have motivated me to become. And, I can also be thankful that God says their deaths will be worked into His overall good plan for the universe. So, while I don't believe I have to say I am thankful for something God Himself doesn't like (death), I can turn my heart with gratitude to the Father and Son for allowing me to experience the hope of Heaven in a very special and tangible way.
A truly spiritual person would, given the opportunity, choose the hard road again because they know it's the one that brings them closer to the Lord.
This is a tough one. I know how much more Evie's and Charlie's deaths have motivated me to pursue God's kingdom and influence others, but I still think I wouldn't choose to do it again.
Even non-living things in our universe choose the path of least resistance - that's why rivers flow downstream and other physics stuff (stuff is a very official physics term - please try to keep up). Anyway, you get my point. Everything is naturally motivated to take the easiest path, my heart included. I don't think being a lover of Jesus requires me to say I would willingly choose the path where my babies die. It might make me sound like I've spiritually arrived, but I don't really feel that way. And I don't think I have to, at least not here.
I can gratefully acknowledge, however, that the painful path God has me on is bearing much more fruit than the original plan I wanted for myself. That's a privilege that I don't take lightly. But as far as actively saying, yes I would willingly do that again ... I think the answer is still no.
But that's not the end of my story. The end of my story will be when I'm sitting at the feasting table of Heaven, my children at my side, taking in all the glory of an eternity that promises no more tears and heartache. And then, I believe, with the knowledge of the completed story of the universe revealed to my heart and before my eyes, I will be able to say, "Yes, I would do this again. It was so worth it."
And so that's where my heart is this Easter weekend. I am thankful for the memory of my babies and the gift they have been in my life, but I am even more thankful that God hates death and allowed Jesus to conquer it for us. And I acknowledge the fruit of my hard labor and am thankful for those opportunities to serve, but I look forward to the day when it all makes perfect sense and I can say, without reservation, it was worth it Lord. Thank you for letting me be a part of this story. I hope I made You proud.
Happy Easter everyone <3
He is risen! (He is risen indeed!)