I sing it from the pews on Sunday. I acknowledge it now and then in my words, offhandedly, because to put anything or anyone above Him is to make it an idol, and good Christian girls don’t have idols. I love knowing the Right Answer: and “Jesus” is always the Right Answer.
Then at night the deep sadness comes again, and I go to bed early, tell him I’m tired because I don’t want him to know that I still cry for her (but I think he knows, anyway).
And I hold it all inside while I wash my hair, brush my teeth, slip between still-hot sheets, while he kisses me goodnight.
And then he turns out the light, pulls the door behind him, and even as his footsteps recede down the hallway, down the stairs, I curl tight into a ball, stomach aching with the fierceness of my grief, eyes burning with hot tears that bring no relief because there is no cure, some wounds even time cannot heal. I scream silently to Him, at Him, because He could have stopped the cyst that killed her; He could have made her whole; and He didn’t, and I hold Him fully responsible for everything.
I can’t breath, but my lips are moving: Why? It’s a question I’ve asked a million times the past two years, and a question that, so far, He won’t answer.
And now, afraid because His silence shakes my world, my mind is racing. “Think of blessings, remember the blessings,” it hisses, fierce, because I’m forgetting the Right Answer.
But every blessing is in exchange for her, and I’d trade them all in a heartbeat to have her. The job I like, that feeds us while he is in school, it’s instead of her. The goals my husband pursues now, we couldn’t be going down this path with her. One by one I list the blessings; one by one they darken into curses, because they mean she isn’t here.
And my tears are spent and my body exhausted and I lay still because I cannot move any more, I cannot think anymore.
And after two long, dark years, He speaks to me. Only it isn’t with answers, just another question.
“If losing Lynn brought you closer to me, would that be worth it?”
I don’t want to answer, because what else will He take to prove my commitment to Him?
“Would losing your husband be worth a closer relationship with me?”
He’s demanding an answer, not harshly – just insistently. What am I willing to give up for Him, really?
And if anything I ever believed about Him is even remotely true, then there is no other answer. There are no other options that make sense, other than to tell Him yes.
My Creator, Savior, has the right to ask of me those that He has given to me.
I fall asleep, my pillow soaked, still bruised and afraid but not hopeless. My God spoke to me. I can find the strength to walk another day.
You number my wanderings; Put my tears into Your bottle; Are they not in Your book? (Psalm 56:7-9)