Death is an ugly and painful reality, isn’t it? I’ve lost friends and family to death, and have ached for those who have lost the same.
As you know, my Dad was diagnosed with cancer April 3, 2012. That day, our family began changing; in hindsight, it’s all been a blessing in disguise, as we have chosen to take a closer look at our relationships and embrace each one with sincerity, love and forgiveness.
We are approaching the four year mark since my Dad’s diagnosis and the past five months have brought an unfortunate decline in his health which has been incredibly difficult to watch; no one deserves to suffer, so we are praying that God will be merciful and spare him the worst of it.
I recently had a friend reach out saying although she knows God is good, she just can’t wrap her mind around the “why” behind the loss of someone you love.
I got to thinking about this and wanted to share my heart here…
Watching my father battle cancer the past 4 years, has been incredibly eye opening in many areas, but specifically to death. While I am experiencing the absolute deepest pain of my life, I also have grown tremendously as a result of the pain.
I am a firm believer that as humans we tend to have preconceived notions as to how life should be, especially when it comes to the timing of someone’s death. However, I am clinging to the verse that God numbers our days, not man.
To us, it feels as if our loved one(s) were taken too soon, but God knows every hair on our head and every breath we will take before we are ever born. (Psalm 139)
I believe that it is God’s immense LOVE that gifts us with people for however long the season may be; whether long or short. We all have a purpose and that purpose is to draw closer to God and to point others closer to Him. However God asks us to do this is what makes us uniquely US and when He deems our work is done, He calls us home to be with Him.
Walking this journey with my parents, while as painful as it is, shows me the incredible amount of God’s goodness and faithfulness. The healing and restoration God has brought to my relationship with my Dad is such a beautiful miracle. I am so immensely grateful that these last years get to be among some of our best years together; patched together with endless memories of my childhood years with him.
I am so grateful for the legacy my Dad is leaving behind; the strong woman he taught me to be and for the Godly character he exhibited in his own life. Perfection? No, but Godly character and true repentance day in and day out? Absolutely! Those are two of the most valuable things to me and should be for every believer.
Death is painful, yet it is not final, so I choose to cling to the life we have now as well as the life we are promised for eternity, as believers in Christ, laying aside this short window of painful loss to focus on the bigger and brighter picture.
In no way am I diminishing your pain, my pain or anyone’s pain, only sharing how I am personally walking through this very thing right here and now.
“Through the pain, still I will trust you, Jesus.”