Wednesday, August 21, 2013


"How many kids do you have?"

Even five years later, this is always a tough question for me. It shouldn't be, but for someone who's experienced loss, it's a struggle. I often have to assess the situation and decide who I let in to my conflicted mind. Sometimes it's simple and I stick with the easy, comfortable answer of one child. Even after I say it, even if it's right for the situation, I always feel a hint of guilt that I've betrayed my son. If I'm feeling brave, I say one living child. And if I'm comfortable enough with you, I tell you that I have two children. Two boys. I just don't have them both with me. And one would have been five today.

I recently read a book called Sifted by Rick Lawrence. It's based upon Luke 22:31-32, in which Jesus' gives permission to Satan to metaphorically "sift" Peter, his most beloved disciple. The author aligns Peter's struggles with our own struggles and God's role in what happens and why. My mom sent me this book almost two years ago. It's been loaned out once, but otherwise, it sat on my nightstand for almost two years until one day, I felt a nudge at my heart and I knew it was time.

Sifting wheat is a tough process. It goes through many stages of being stripped down, tossed around and rinsed clean until you get to the part of the wheat that can actually be used. 

God uses struggles in our lives to "sift" us. He allows things to happen in our lives that are hard and painful, even if it feels downright cruel and unfair. But it's not about the struggle; it's about what we look like after it's over. It's about what's "usable" when we're done being sifted. It's about looking more like Jesus.

Losing Robert has been a major sifting in my life. It left me broken, exposed and never more aware of just how little control that I have on my life and just how much God does. 

I could have turned from God and there are those who would not have blamed me for it, but then I would have missed out on so much. 

I would have missed out on my church. We didn't have a church home at the time I delivered Robert, but we felt compelled to call this little church we'd visited a few months back called Journey Church. A few hours later, Lisa Bauer walked into my recovery room with a plant and a smile and let me know that I was not alone. It's been our church home for the last five years.

It could have destroyed my marriage. We were both grieving and could have turned inward, but we allowed God to use us to support one another and our marriage not only survived, but it flourished and remains stronger than ever.

I would have missed out on friendships. Wonderful, Godly friendships. Women who love me and support me, even when I'm at my worst.

Losing Robert has never been in vain. It's never been meaningless. It's been hard and painful, but I'm so grateful to God for where He's brought me through it all. And the further I am, the more I know and that I'm absolutely certain that there is a much bigger plan in all of this. That had I not gone through losing Robert, I would have missed out on God's very best for my life.

I want to finish this post by sharing an amazing song by Shane and Shane called "Though You Slay Me," featuring John Piper. It wraps up so much of what this has felt like for me and why even now, missing my son like crazy, I will continue to praise the only One I need.

No comments:

Post a Comment