Saturday, May 12, 2012
“Not that I am (I think) in much danger of ceasing to believe in God. The real danger is of coming to believe such dreadful things about Him. The conclusion I dread is not 'So there's no God after all,' but 'So this is what God's really like. Deceive yourself no longer.”
― C.S. Lewis, A Grief Observed
This has been running through my little brain for the past week. Mainly because the last week or so has been a personal study in just how weak and sad I truly am. Apparently I am not quite as strong or faithful as I would have loved to have told myself that I were. So that's a little disappointing.
Not surprising but disappointing.
Thankfully I am not the only woman who has outlived their child or the only believer who has looked at God and questioned "why" or "how" or "what the heck were you thinking Lord?". And some may think that is crossing the lines of being full of faith but I cling to the character of God who desires to bind up my broken heart. He knows my hurts and questions and angers...and He is able to love me despite my heart.
In fact He loves me more for my heart, as it is shattered and I am attempting to reshape it with each tear and ache.
I love C.S. Lewis for many reasons. I have been reading and rereading A Grief Observed and it is consoling me. To have such freedom in Christ to be allowed to question His ways and still...always to come back. That He is never crushed or offended that we would not be pleased with Him taking our spouses or children or dreams...he cares. Still He cares. And still we will be faced with sadness. He will not always remove the things which sting. He will not always pad our falls. He will not always answer us how we want.
Can I still believe that God is good when He choses to withhold His goodness in a season? When "naming it and claiming it" did not work? How does this big grief line up with a purely good and safe God? I do not know.
I cannot comprehend His ways.
My Linley has a new saying..."I love you more than you think". She tells me this when she is kissing me good night or when she is loading up for carpool. She has never once, not once, said this before Piper died. She says this to me often now...sometimes daily.
I think that God does too. I think that His character, while never flawed, is often painful in the process of teaching us. The more I learn of Him, the more I love Him and the more I hurt...I do not understand this concept but I feel it.
I feel Him telling me "Susanna, I love you more than you think" when I rail against His seemingly quiet ear. This character He has...it is beautiful. Just like there is beauty in my ashes, there is beauty in the giving and the taking. In the tears and the smiles. In each moment I am required to breathe here.
So He loves us more than we think.
His character is perfect and often painfully independent of our own wants.
And I am allowed to question Him. Who He is is not always who I want Him to be but is always what I need Him to be...and that's what matters.