Quick Recap of The Question: Where is the Miracle?
I ask myself, what happened to The Miracle? A question I mulled over a lot while Kyle suffered. What treatment did his doctors leave out? What did I do wrong? What did I miss? What prayers did I leave out? Why did Kyle suffer for four years before we got our lives back? Why did the sweet little girl in the hospital room next to ours go through three years of agony and never get her life back? We all ask these hard questions—controversial faith altering questions and God tells us, “…my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways” (Isaiah 55:8 NIV).
I asked a question at the end of the last post, Where is the Miracle? The question was this—What if The Miracle did occur and I missed it?
What if The Miracle had nothing to do with the end result?
And everything to do with the journey?
In the middle of Kyle’s battle with leukemia, my friend Robin and I were having coffee and talking about our kids and the worst thing that could happen to them. At the time, caught up in Kyle’s cancer, I immediately said, “death.”
She shook her head to disagree. “Eternal separation from God.”
All I could think about revolved around Kyle’s life now. Here. With me. And what it would be like to live without him.
But what if my earthly perspective on suffering and death didn’t fit with God’s perspective on eternity? Wrapping my head around The Miracle in the journey seemed as impossible as stretching out my hand in Plano, Texas to touch my mother in Madison, Wisconsin.
What if God saw suffering like this—the life of one small, vulnerable child or one broken-hearted mother could impact the eternal lives of two people? Or four? Or forty?
What if The Miracle in the journey gave me a glimpse of God in a way I never would have seen? I am a new person. A different person. A better person in so many ways. And so is Kyle. What if I learned that trust came in different forms and brought unique blessings—one of them being my son’s relationship with Jesus and his life goal. After high school graduation this May, his heart’s desire is to go to nursing school and then work in pediatric oncology.
I need to re-examine my journey. The moments. The day by day. I need to stop looking for The Miracle at the end and open my eyes to search for it in the midst—the midst of pain, fear, frustration, and hopelessness.
That takes a special pair of eyes.
Eyes that I don’t have.
But I know where I can get them. God’s Word spills over with His perspective. His ways. His miracles. I believe the Bible when I am encouraged to, “Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding” (Proverbs 3:5 NIV). I hang onto to the promise that, “Blessed are those who find wisdom, those who gain understanding” (Proverbs 3:13 NIV).
What could it hurt to ponder The Miracle being in the journey rather than at the end of it? We’re going to walk the walk no matter what. If suffering, pain, and death must be part of that journey, anger and denial won’t change a thing.
But looking for The Miracle in the midst just might.
AS A FOOTNOTE, I would like to share my friend DiAne's comments to Part One of this post. I did not lose my son to cancer, but many others have. Here is one perspective from the other side.
Lori, after our daughter died eleven years ago I spent many hours questioning God about unanswered prayer. How could He have refused my request for healing? I prayed so hard. Our daughter had a seven month old that God had healed in the womb. She also had a four year old. Both of these kiddos needed their mom.
One evening after a particularly long and painful outcry to my Lord, He gave a stunning answer. One I will never forget. “I did heal Michelle, DiAne. I chose to take her home to do it.” That was about the time I found the verse in Deuteronomy 29:29 “The things revealed belong to you and your children forever; but, the secret things belong to the Lord.”
Does that mean I never question? I’d love to affirm the fact that I never do anymore. But that would be a lie. I still question. I still grieve. However, I’ve learned that joy and pain can mutually co-exist in my heart. What is even better, the depth of pain increases my capacity for joy. I’ve come to understand that God did indeed accomplish The Miracle for our daughter ~ I just haven’t seen it ~ yet!
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About Lori Freeland
Lori Freeland, a freelance writer from the Dallas area, holds a bachelor's degree in psychology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. In her other life, the one BK—before kids—she has worked as a social worker and a certified dyslexic reading tutor. Currently, she embraces her status as full-time homeschool mom to three awesome children. Her big dream? Becoming a Young Adult novelist, a goal she diligently pursues during the wee hours of the morning with help from a very large mug of coffee and occasionally some chocolate-covered peanuts. In addition to blogging and contributing regular inspirational articles to Crosswalk.com, The Christian Pulse, and Believe.com, she loves to mentor new writers and encourage people to share their life stories. As a member of the Cancer Mom club, she desires to connect with others in hopes of giving support to those struggling down the messy paths of life. You can find her hanging with the North Texas Christian Writers as a Critique Group Leader and Writing Coach or cheering on her writers on the Faith Team at The Christian Pulse where she recently took on the role of editor. She also loves to attend Society for Children's Book Writers and Illustrators meetings where she has begun a critique workshop for new writers. You can visit her website at LAFREELAND.COM.
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