During times of crisis, the common question seems to be "why?" Sometimes that is followed by "me," as in "Why me?" I was talking with a friend the other day who told me that when her son was hospitalized and underwent surgery, she did a lot of asking that question "why me?" Our conversation really made me stop and think.
When my first husband died, I don't ever remember saying "why me?" In fact, I specifically remember thinking "Well, I am certainly no better than anyone else that I should be spared from something like this." And as painful as it was, I also remember thinking that I would never have wished those circumstances on my worst enemy. However, I did spend many moments crying out to God, begging Him to take that yoke from me and asking "Why?" Although I never received a direct answer to my question, eventually I was able to claim Jeremiah 29:11 in response to the question. "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." And as life began to form a new "normal," I started to see that my Heavenly Father did indeed have plans for me. He created beauty from ashes and truly did give me hope and a future. My life with Mark and our two precious kiddos are wonderful blessings that came out of heartbreak.
I admit that Maia's illness has challenged that mind set. There have been moments when I have wondered "Why her, God? Why my sweet girl? She has done nothing to deserve all of the pain that she has endured in her short life. She shouldn't have to suffer like this." And in being painfully honest with myself, I have wondered why He has chosen Mark and I to walk this path with a child. Recently, I heard someone quote a line from a country song that went something like "If you want to make God laugh, tell Him what YOU want." I laughed when I heard it because I think there is truth in the statement. Who am I to tell God what is best for me? As I was typing this, I just had another "a-ha" moment. We have had (and continue to have) a lot of conversations in our house about who is in charge. That the kids do not get to make the rules, they are not in charge, and they do not tell mommy and daddy what to do. Isn't that a little bit like we try to do. We try to tell God what the rules are, that we are in charge, and what we want. The truth is that HE is the creator of our lives and our journeys, that HE is in charge, and I am in no position to tell HIM what to do. Oh.. the things we learn from our kids.
The bottom line is that I may never know why Maia (and our family/friends) have been chosen for this journey. At least not this side of heaven. Of course, it's not what anyone would want for their child. But, God spoke very clearly to me as I was sitting in the emergency room with Maia while doctors worked to stop her seizures. I don't know if you remember, but He said to me, "I have chosen a different journey for Maia. And with that in mind, I can continue to claim the bible verse I noted above. God has plans for Maia, just like he Has plans for each one of us - if we choose to allow Him to direct our lives. He will give her hope and a future. Another passage that God led me to yesterday was 1 Peter 4: 12-13, "Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice insofar as you share Christ’s sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when his glory is revealed." I do pray that God's glory will be revealed through Maia's illness and recovery. He is the reason that we are able to fight this battle and I will give thanks to Him in all things, even when I don't understand. I will give thanks that God felt that we were worthy to be Maia's parents, knowing that these circumstances were going to be part of her life. I will also give thanks that God felt we were worthy to be Matthew's parents, knowing that he would experience his own turmoil and stress because of Maia's illness. I will give thanks that God is big enough to handle my tears and He is big enough to handle my "Why?" As far as the "Why me?, well... the better question is "Why NOT me?"