I am not ready.
I am not ready to say goodbye.
I had a moment to myself the other night and sat and simply asked “why.” The tears want to come now. I have struggled with anger, with pleading and trying to bribe God. Even now I want to beg Him to change the tide in favor of what we would all like to see. Healing. Complete healing from this ravager called cancer.
I am just not ready. Can you ever be?
It seems crazy; I am not even blood. But. It is incredible how a person can affect you. I remember the first memorable talk at Panera. She listened and heard me, not one facial expression saying she thought I was crazy or the most horrible human. All I saw was love and a deep understanding. She walked with me through more than I could have imagined in the last four years.
She is one of those friends that connects with you in such a way that you cannot imagine ever not having been her friend. She is a fire of deep passion, loving fiercely all those who open their hearts to her. She is a deep-hearted mama, caring for her children with wild abandon. She is a wife adored, understanding the abounding love of the Father through human love. She is a million laughs, with a giggle so contagious you cannot help but be filled with joy when you hear it. She is a quiet moment, grieving with you in deep pain, crying with you over loss, hearing your deepest aches. She is a fountain of wisdom, a refreshing drink for thirsty souls. She is an unending beautiful heart. She has seen it all, yet has broken gracefully under the grace and love of One greater. She is more because of Him.
In all of this, I am so grateful for eternity; and that these upcoming moments will be but a pause before time washes away. The “why’s” don’t go away. They are so very real, so raw, so honest. They ask why God could pull away a much-needed woman from three baby girls still at home. They ask why a husband looks at the next years without his bride, learning how to finish raising their children. They ask why someone so young should have to go. And yet, I was reading this morning and this quote struck me:
“We keep looking at the darkness, and it feels like you messed up here….Maybe you forgot that….she is the best mom, and her kids adore her and need her. You forgot she’s already suffered enough and depends on you for her every breath. You forgot she makes us all laugh more than any other friend we have. You forgot that so many people lover her that we can’t all fit in waiting rooms. Or maybe it’s us who’s forgetting? May we forget that we see days and you see eras. We see a friend and you see your child. We see sickness and death and you see our never-ending, unimaginable future life…..We see three (six) children without their mama and you hold their souls and see just how to press into them. You get to be God whether we like it or not. You get to decide how this goes, and we can only beg at your feet. And when you seem forgetful to me….I walk past the statue and you yell to me from your cross. ‘I have forgotten nothing. And I am not passive in my approach to this problem….I do not forget. I bleed out for this. So as you walk past me on that cross…into a room that feels out of control and full of suffering, don’t see a weak, distant, forgetful God. You see a God who tells oceans where to stop and a God who tells evil where to stop. You see a God who bleeds out for those you hurt for. You see a God who suffered first. I AM with you. And I have a plan here’” (Allen, 21 &22).
As I read that quote above, my heart burst. It burst because those words put on paper what I haven’t been able to do myself. All of this seems so senseless, but His plan is greater.
So to my sweet friend, the one who heard my deepest, darkest sorrows and loved me anyway, you gave me space to heal and grow, you trusted me with your deepest treasures as you started out on this journey, you are battling well; you are my hero.
Allen, Jennie. Restless. 2013. Nashville, TN. Thomas Nelson. 21 &22.