God never ceases to amazes me. I started this blog a couple weeks ago and planned to work on it this afternoon to post later this week but after our guest Pastor's message, I would like to share it with you today. As Pastor Jim delivered a message rooted in Psalm 22 and Psalm 23, the Lord spoke to my heart. The worship order prepared our hearts and mind to receive communion, pastor read from the Bible, and I simply absorbed it all. And then....
For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son,
God spoke to me with words that brought tears to my eyes and the emotions of the past weeks to the surface. While I was listening to Pastor Jim, my attention was directed upward. I felt as if Jesus was sitting right next to me and filling in the pieces for this blog. I pray I'm able to relay the message I "heard" to you and you are blessed to.
There is a situation in life that is probably one of the most difficult to comprehend and handle when you, or a loved one, is face to face with it. What is the first thing you thought of? The one that always stands out to me is when the relationship between parent and child is interrupted by illness, disease, tragedy, or death.
I remember the words spoken by my Grandmother after my Uncle Tom passed away, "There is no greater pain then to watch your child die, then to lose him." My heart broke for my Gram and then I thought of my parents, she physically buried her son. While my parents "lost" their daughter, and nineteen years later, still live daily without knowledge of her whereabouts. The commonality, my Gram, and my parents were both separated from their child. Each living with a void only understood when you've experienced this pain firsthand.
One day as I sat on the deck with the warmth of the sun on my cheeks, a thought came to my mind.
"God totally understands how the parents of a missing child, or the parents of dying child feel." Okay, before you click the white "x" in the red box in the top right hand corner, please hear me out.
Of course there are more differences than similarities yet when you stop and really think about it, the separation experienced is profound. You know why? God send His Only Son, Jesus, to die on the cross for us - for you - for me.
Unlike the parents of the ill, dying, or missing child though - God had a choice. He could have taken Jesus from the cross and saved Him from the pain and horrific crucifiction, but He didn't. God could of avoided the entire scene so Jesus wasn't even put in the predicament to call out to him, "“Eloi, Eloi, lema sabachthani?” So why? I don't have Biblical proof of this theory I have yet after weeks of thought and prayer on this, I'm going to put it out there. Some may disagree with me, others might be speechless, and if you are the parent still in the anger stage -- you may exit my blog right now because "I don't get it." But I hope you'll hear me out a little bit longer.
“Blessed are those
Can you imagine the pain, torment, anger, frustration, rage, doubt, and array of emotions a parent must feel watching their child suffer with constant illness, an undiagnosed medical condition, or worse yet -- watching their child die?
If you are this parent, please know you are in my prayers often. I pray for my parents daily and their strength continues to amaze me. I hope you know your strength amazes me too -- the ability to get out of bed each morning, to make coffee, or maybe its the simple task of lifting your head of the pillow at the start of each day. When your child is sick, missing, dying, or sadly passed away -- you must celebrate the little things throughout your day.
So what does this have to do with my theory that God understands where you've been? Let me try to connect some of these dots for you. We, on earth, do not have a choice when faced with the unthinkable.
We can't take away our child's pain, their sickness, or save them from death. Our children can call out to us and ask, "Mommy, Daddy, make me feel better?" or "Make the hurt go away." But no matter how much we would want to say, "Of course, you'll feel better when you wake up.", we can't make this promise. BUT Jesus, the Son of God, did call to his Daddy.
Do you remember how God responded? Check this out...
The Death of Jesus
Although God had the power to do what each parent watching their child suffer wishes they could do...He didn't! Instead, separation. So why would a loving and caring God look away from his faithful, obedient, and Only Son? Why?
We love because he first loved us.
God is all-knowing, all-present, all-seeing, and all-powerful. God sees into the future and knew as the world transpired into the one in which we live today, we would need a Savior.
There was only one way for God to bridge the distance between earth and heaven (eternity) ~ He watched His Only Son suffer crucifixion - a horrendous death. He heard His Son call out to Him and chose not to respond because God knew this was the only way you and I could have an open relationship with Him.
Prior to Jesus' death, your typical person couldn't communicate (pray) with God - only the elders or priests could - Jesus' death and resurrection released the Holy Spirit here on earth to intervene on our behalf and established a forever bond with God. One we don't have to wait to experience, one that is readily available when we call out to Him.
God had the power to do what every grieving or helpless parent wishes and prays he or she could do - end their child's pain, suffering, or in the case of the missing - bring their child home.
And this is the testimony:
There is always a lot of focus on the sacrifice Jesus gave (as there should be) on the cross for us yet think about the Ultimate Sacrifice God gave - He allowed His Only Son to die so that you and I might live an eternal life in heaven with Him. I plan to enjoy each day I have here on earth yet look forward to the beauty, peace, health, and joy waiting for me when I am in heaven.
If you are grieving the loss of a child or a parent watching your child suffer with cancer, diabetes, an undiagnosed illness, or worse yet - helplessly witnessing him or her take their last breath...know God understands the pain of separation and watching your son or daughter suffer.
The greatest difference is this: God didn't answer Jesus so that you can call out to Him when you felt the similar pain, ever so briefly. I like to think of it this way - God only experienced this loss and distance briefly yet He had one thing we don't - choice.
He chose you and me. Will you choose Him?
In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness.
If you are this parent - is there a way we can pray for you?
Lisa M Buske
P.O. Box 323