When I was young I faithfully attended church, Wednesdays, Sundays, and in between. I went to vacation Bible school every Summer, I went to Indiana for a young Presbyterian worldwide convention, and I went to church camp.
Now I am struggling, my Grandma is a devout Baptist and her faith gets her through. Honestly she’s the strongest of all of us and it’s her unwavering belief in God that makes her the person she is. She literally lost half of her family in a year’s time and yet she is at peace with this. Not only is she at peace with it, but she came running when my house burned down a day after she got home from having watched her sister die a horrific death, she came to take care of me. I wish I could say I didn’t lean on her but I did, and heavily, I cried on her shoulder, I railed, I screamed, I cursed God, and the whole time she held me up even though truly she’s been through everything I’ve been through and more. She held the hand of her father, husband, and sister while they died (and not the peaceful they went in their sleep deaths either), all in a year’s time. She held the hand of my uncle and his wife through a traumatic pregnancy and when the baby didn’t make it she ran out the door of my mom’s house after having taken care of me and ran to help them. I asked her how she can do it?! How can she live through so much in so short a time and still be the one to hold us all up?! How can she not HATE God? The thought doesn’t even occur to her. To her it was God’s will, it was meant to be, it’s his way of showing her who she is, how strong she is, it’s him testing her and letting her know she can handle it all and more. The deaths to her are not a bad thing. They are a good thing. God needed them more than we did. It was their time, and they are moving to a better place, the place we can all only hope to be one day.
Then there’s me. I want to ask Him what the Hell he’s thinking?! How can he allow these things to keep coming at us?! How can he keep “testing” me when I obviously can’t handle it?! WHY me?!
How pathetic am I? Thanksgiving comes and while I am so thankful for all we have and I know it could have been SO much worse, I am still struggling with what we lost this past year, and all we’ve been through. Then I just feel worse for being so stinking selfish.
It’s not that I don’t believe in God. I’ve seen too much in my life to NOT believe in God. It’s just that I can’t find that un-wavering faith in Him that my Grandmothers’ have.
According to one of my dearest friends that makes me doomed to rot in Hell and is a mortal sin. I don’t believe that, it defies logic that he would allow us to make mistakes, and be human and yet curse us for being exactly what he meant us to be.
When I ask my grandma how God can make these things happen to us, keep happening to us, she tells me He doesn’t “make” anything happen. He allows bad things to happen, He gave us free will starting with Eve, He allows us to be tested so we may know our strength, so we may become what we will become, He hopes we will weather it and realize these things and be stronger for it, but He has to allow us to be tested, to be human, to be who we are, to become who we can become and without a test of our strength and our faith He would not be doing His job. All I can say is, I have some really serious questions for Him when I meet Him.
I want to know why I have to have a criminal background check to be the committee chair of our Boy Scout pack (I schedule events and pack meetings and basically keep the pack running smoothly), but any idiot can have a baby, and beat them to death. I want to know why people kill each other with no remorse. I want to know how and why a mother can kill her own child just because she wants to go out on a date?! I want to know why someone like her can have a baby and can probably have more and more babies but so many of us who know what a precious gift they are, can’t. I want to know so many things and then I think I must be extremely arrogant to think He will answer these questions, that He HAS to answer these questions for me, that I would dare to ask Him why he does anything at all. <sigh>
I think my life would be so much easier if I either had unwavering faith in Him or didn’t, but I just can’t find that faith and God help me I think I wish I could. But of course that’s arrogant too, to want to find my faith in Him just to make myself feel better, to be stronger, and to be a better person.
So I guess when it comes down to it, I am exactly what He meant to create, which is a very flawed, very self centered, human being in the middle of an insanely huge pity party.