Today has been a busy day. I can say that I thoroughly enjoyed my children today. I played with them and snuggled them, listened to them and spoke with them. We played camping and t-ball, golf and read stories. As the day began to wind down I began to reflect a bit and I got this knot in my stomach when I thought about the fact that I would never have to chase a t-ball a million and one times for Asher. I will never explain why the sky is blue or grass is green to Isaac. As I began to think of these things I began to feel physically ill in addition to being sad. I sat down to read a bit and immediately as my backside hit the couch, Luke asked for a cup of milk. Not just any milk, but strawberry milk. In the grouchiest of voices I whined, "Yes, of course I will get your stinkin milk." I got the milk and handed it to Luke. He looked at me inquisitively and put the cup in the tent. He replied, "Mom, then I will put the milk in the tent so you don't have to smell it." (I did say stinkin') Sarcasm is not something preschoolers do well with and I often am guilty of using sarcasm way too often. So, Luke continues, "So, Mom why do you think my strawberry milk stinks? Is it because it comes from a bunny?" Ok, now I was curious...so I asked why he thought strawberry milk came from a bunny...of course his answer was that the bottle the strawberry stuff comes out of is shaped like a bunny therefore obviously must be bunny milk! Aha the Nesquik bunny lactates! :-) My son is a genius, I am convinced.
These are memories I will NEVER have with Isaac or Asher. I never saw their little eyes look at me with trust the way a newborn looks at his mommy, and I never heard their voices making it known that they are hungry. I think back at the unfolding of the last few months and still find it all difficult to believe. It seems like a story or a Lifetime movie or something, not my life. It is at these times that my grief consumes me. I feel paralyzed with loss. I cannot believe that in my 29 years on this earth not once but twice I have held my newborn infant, my dreams for them dying along with them. It seems cruel and it seems unfair.
I sat down to try to find something uplifting to bring me out of my funk and this was the verse I came to first...
"After John was put in prison, Jesus went into Galilee, proclaiming the good news of God." Mark 1:14
John was certainly a righteous man. A prophet. He was put into prison. This was NOT good. He was no longer able to preach God's word to the people who needed it so desperately. This was horrible!
This verse says that after this horrible thing happened, Jesus continued on to Galilee "proclaiming the good news of God". He didn't mumble and groan and feel crummy. He continued praising God and sharing the good news of God. God had allowed this righteous man to suffer and be thrown in to jail. Even a great prophet was not exempt from suffering and Jesus knew that whatever God allowed to happen, he would also use for his glory. God allowed Jesus to suffer on the cross. His own son was not exempt from immense pain and suffering. In fact it is that suffering that saves us all. God certainly used that. He will use my suffering too. I just have to constantly remind myself that it is an honor to serve God in this way and not to give in to wanting to crawl into bed and hide. God is bigger than all of this. He is caring for my boys in a way only He can and I rejoice that they will NEVER have to know this kind of suffering. I pray that God continues to work in me and help me understand and use all of this for his glory. I often feel so sad and alone but in reality I am NEVER alone and though at times I grow weary He will carry me.
It is my job just like Jesus to continue to proclaim the good news of my Heavenly Father even though I have endured intense pain and suffering. I know that without God it would not even be possible to pull myself out of bed in the morning. He has answered many of our prayers and will continue to do so. I ache for my boys who are not with me but I can rest in knowing they are held in Mighty Arms and were given to me for a brief time for a great reason. God has blessed our family!
No matter the circumstance, God is the same...He never changes. There is no circumstance we cannot overcome with God on our team! No one is exempt from suffering. We all experience it. Suffering and grief are universal. We can however endure anything if we accept God's good plan and submit to his will!