Sunday, July 10, 2011


Health is something I tend to take for granted on any given day. Unless I'm sick, I don't think about the gift that being healthy is. Right now I have two friends facing some serious health concerns. These are young mothers who shouldn't have to carry these heavy burdens, and there is nothing anyone can do to make it better for them.

We can pray, and we are, and offer practical support, which we do, but beyond that, it's not in our hands. Life is not fair, and I have no idea why the axe comes down on some people and leaves others unscathed. This is God's territory, not mine, but I don't understand these things and would like more answers than I can seem to find.

I've been learning about surrender. Letting go of my own sense of control, and of justice, and all of the ways that the world could function better than it does. Some days I see nothing but beauty when I look around me, and other days, nothing but brokenness and pain. I have to believe that God's heart is breaking too, but if he's truly in control of this world, couldn't he make some changes so it's easier for us?

But maybe easier isn't the answer. Possibly it's like parents watching their kids blunder through life and make the kind of mistakes which will teach far deeper lessons than us opening our mouths and talking. Some things we have to experience. But life-threatening illness and disease? Is it really necessary to walk that path and have to learn that painful of a lesson?

I have no idea why some people get sick and others stay healthy. Even if you do everything "right" by eating well and exercising and getting eight hours of sleep at night, you aren't guaranteed to avoid cancer or any other illness. We tell ourselves differently so that we won't panic, but these friends of mine don't deserve what is happening to them, and I have no idea what to say or do to make any sense of it at all.

I'm trying to find peace by living in the grey areas and not needing everything to be black and white. It's easier said than done. I would prefer that things make sense to me; that I have some semblance of control in my life. Even if I don't, I want to feel that I do. I know in my mind that there are no guarantees, and every time I hug my kids or kiss my husband or enjoy a heart-to-heart with a good friend, I want to treasure those moments.

I wish I had something more solid to offer these friends than my prayers, and my outrage on their behalf, and my listening ear. It comes down to community, and love, and giving what we can to each other. It's about investment. We must put something into our relationships, so we build up substance there, for we never know when we will need the support of others in our life. For today, I'm so grateful for my health, and I pray hard for those I love who are facing specialists and diagnoses, and the kind of huge worries that I can only imagine.

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