Thursday, November 20, 2008

Things That Get Me By

Kindness of Strangers

The apathetic void that I'm feeling at work by those closest to me is actually being filled by people I barely know or don't know at all. Last night, for example, I was shopping for a new dress. I wasn't even set on buying anything, but because these women were so nice and accomodating, I almost felt obligated. They weren't doing it for commission or to get anything else out of it, they were just doing it because they enjoyed their jobs (which many people, including myself, don't have right now).

So my frustration was building in the dressing room, as I was trying on dress after dress that just didn't look as flattering on me as they did on the size 0 mannequins. The lady could probably sense my frustration, so I explained to her that I'd just had a baby a few months ago and I'm not back to my old figure. Well, I finally found a beautiful dress, and after I was done checking out, the lady asked how old my baby was. I said, "Well, I had a son in June, but unfortunately he passed away." The cashier who checked me out almost started crying and she said with much empathy, "I was pregnant 6 times and only have 3 kids." They both said they would pray for me, and I left the store with such a feeling of satisfaction. Sometimes, I just need people to acknowledge my reality, whether or not they understand what I'm going through.

Epiphanies and Enlightenment

I don't discuss much about religion or God on this blog. I'm not a preacher, so I won't preach. I've always believed that people have every right to put their faith where they feel necessary, and I'm not going to be that person that imposes my beliefs on others. Anyway, this next little anecdote is part of my faith journey that I actually wanted to share. I asked Justin if he was angry at God for what happened to Dylan, and he answered quickly and steadfastly, "No". Of course I wanted him to elaborate. After all, he's a father who'd just lost his son, he had every right to be angry and bitter. He said, "God doesn't interfere. He knew exactly what was going to happen, but He doesn't interfere." I was completely taken off gaurd, but in the best way possible. It's like my vision of God was shifted, shaken to the core, but it made perfect sense.

In order for people to believe in Free Will (which I do), you almost have to accept this version (I'm not sure if that's the right word) of God. In order for me to stop being angry at God and shaking my fists in the air (because I don't want to be angry at God), I had to believe that God doesn't desire to punish people. He doesn't will for bad things to happen to anyone. The reality of life is that bad things do happen, and God is simply there for us to pick up the pieces in the aftermath. It absolutely harkens back to the Footprints in the Sand poem. We experience times of trial and suffering, God doesn't stop or prevent that. But that is when God is carrying us. And then Justin showed me this poem:

And God said "no"
-Author Unknown

I asked God to take away my grief,
And God said no-
It is not for me to take away,
But for you to work through.

I asked God to make my broken heart whole,
And God said no-
Your spirit is whole.
Your pain is only temporary.

I asked God to grant me patience,
And God said no-
Patience is a by-product of tribulation.
It isn't granted, it's earned.

I asked God to give me happiness,
And God said no-
I give you blessings.
Happiness is up to you.

I asked God to spare me pain,
And God said no-
suffering draws you apart from worldly cares,
And brings you closer to Me.

I asked God to make my spirit grow,
and God said no-
Grow on your own.
I do the pruning that makes you fruitful.

I asked God if He loved me,
And God said yes-
I gave my only son to die for you.

I asked God to help me love others,
As much as He loves me.
God said, "Ah, finally you have the idea."

Justin's been carrying this on a folded-up piece of paper in his Bible, ever since he "accidentally" stumbled upon it one day at work.

1 comment:

Sara said...

This poem is beautiful. Thank you so much for sharing - it is comforting.

I hope you had a blessed Thanksgiving.