Thursday, May 28, 2009

In Control

MckMama of My Charming Kids wrote an excellent blog post today about how she learned a lesson of faith from the navigational device in her car. She realized that, just as she knew it was safe to take the offramp that the device was unaware existed, she could have faith that God may take us down roads when we're not aware of what's at the end. She applied the lesson to what has happened with her son Stellan and his heart condition.

I so related to that post. When I got the news that something was wrong with Sarah, it was devestating. To hear that your baby, no matter how long carried is not capable of being one you take home. To hear that continuing to carry a much loved and wanted baby could endanger your life, it's a lot to take in. It could have been a time that I railed against God. Why was He allowing it to happen? Instead I found I needed God desperately to get through each moment.

The whole experience made me realize something that, as parents, I don't think we like to admit. We're not in control. We can buy the best carseats, and double check their proper installation. We can teach them not to cross the street without holding hands or looking both ways. We can teach them not to talk to strangers or help them look for lost puppies. We can start them on simple baby foods one at a time to look for allergies. We can feed them the best food. But life is uncertain. We are not in control. Anything is possible.

In some ways, this idea scares the bejeezus out of me. Personally, I'm a control kind of girl. I like to be able to choose what happens next. And the choices I make do have an impact. It's important to do all those things we do to keep our kids safe and healthy. But ultimately, I don't have that control. But I have faith that God does.

It's hard for me, day after day, to remember that. And to give thanks to Him for each day He graciously gives us as a family. It's hard for me to understand why He allows some of the things He does. Of course I know that even if He came down right now and explained it, it probably wouldn't satisfy me. I have to trust Him.

Where I do have control is in my attitude, and the way I choose to respond to the things in the world over which I have no control. I could hang my head and pout, cry, or rant against the injustices of the world, or even in my home. But it doesn't do me or anyone else any good. I can choose my actions. I can make the best choices possible to keep my family safe. And I can choose to worship the Lord even when I don't understand why things are happening that are painful or I just don't want to. Hebrews 13:15 uses the phrase "sacrifice of praise" which is something I've come to understand as I've learned to praise God through grief, fear, and uncertainty.

There is peace in the knowledge that He is strong enough to hold on to me, when I am too weak to hold on to Him. And, while I don't have ultimate control over what happens in the world, it is comforting to know that I can always turn to Jesus and that He has given me the free will to be able to choose and control how I respond to a world I don't always understand.

A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.
Proverbs 17:22

Through Jesus, therefore, let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise—the fruit of lips that confess his name. And do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased.

Show me your ways, O LORD,
teach me your paths;

guide me in your truth and teach me,
for you are God my Savior,
and my hope is in you all day long.

Remember, O LORD, your great mercy and love,
for they are from of old.
Psalm 25:4-6

1 comment:

  1. I was really moved by MckMama's post to.

    What an awesome God we have, thankful we can trust him to be in control.

    So sorry about your sweet Sarah.


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