One of the things that I have personally struggled with for the last 2 years is the thought that I am displeasing God because of my questions and my doubts. You see, I have always been the good girl that follows the rules and instructions to the letter. Bob used to say that if someone told me to jump, I’d ask “How high?” It has always been my nature to be obedient – especially to God. Questioning God’s ways or not believing that something He is doing in my life is not good was simply out of the question.
After Bob died, I felt so very betrayed by God. It was as if the heavens were brass and He had not been hearing my/our prayers during those last 4 months. I knew in my heart that there was no known sin in our lives and nothing between us and God. In fact, we were the closest to God spiritually in those last months than we had both ever been in our lives. So, why had this happened? Why had the rug literally been pulled out from under me leaving me on my face flat on the floor with a pile of rocks on top of me? There was no way that THIS could be God’s best for me. NO WAY whatsoever!
Several weeks later my mother told me that she was asking God to take her home even though she knew it wasn’t a good time for me. She was just so very exhausted from fighting to live. Where was God in all of this? Those people who loved me the most were leaving me one by one and my heart cried out, “What kind of love is THIS, God?!!”
Two weeks after Mama died my dad began to quickly go downhill. He would sit there in his chair oblivious to me and pray aloud, “God, please take me home! PLEASE take me home!” over and over and over. Seeing how brokenhearted he was and listening to him pray that day in and day out became completely unbearable and inside I screamed, “Where are You, God?!!! Can’t You see what is going on down here? Why are You doing this to me? How CAN You do this to me? Can’t you see that I am down for the count now and this is just more than I can bear? Daddy simply couldn’t live without my mother and joined her 2 months after she went to heaven. Oh, how he and Bob and Mama must have rejoiced together, but oh howutterly broken I was to be left here without them.
I’ve figured out that once I get to heaven, I won’t want to know the answers to all of my whys and how could You’s because it won’t even matter then. I know in my head that God sees the bigger picture of my life, but I am still struggling to “get that” in my heart. I will also be honest with you and tell you that at this point in my grief journey almost 25 months later, I still feel abandoned by God. I still cannot see how He is working everything out for good in my life and I have no idea what my purpose is now. I wonder how there can ever be real joy again in my life.
Several days ago I listened to a Bible study online that was given by Rabbi Shmuley Boteach that convinced me that I am not a disappointment to God and that there is a reason and a purpose for my ongoing struggles. He said the following:
Righteousness in Judaism is not defined by perfection. It’s defined by struggle. It’s the man or woman who wrestles to do better in the midst of an imperfect nature who is to be praised. Every time we fight with the dark side – every time we engage it – even if we fall sometimes, it’s the fact that we are ready to fight for what’s important that the glory of God goes higher and higher. It is she who wrestles to do the right thing that is truly righteous.
I am wrestling to do the right thing. I know that my faith needs to be stronger and I need to be able to fully and completely trust that God IS working everything out for my good. I need to trust that He is going to be my husband now and is going to take care of me completely for the rest of my life. I need to trust that He has not abandoned me and loves me with a much greater love than my husband and my parents had for me. I need to take my hand off of the controls and allow Him to have complete and utter control. This is the raging battle that I am in and somehow because I am willing to fight to get to that place of faith the glory of God in my life will go higher and higher. I cannot tell you how this will happen, but in my heart I know that Rabbi Shmuley’s statement is true because my heart burned within me when I heard those words.
“Without a struggle, there can be no progress.“