The e-mail said, “How are you doing? I know your wedding anniversary is coming up, and I’m just wondering if you are all right.”
I was surprised by the message. No one else remembered, and I guess that is to be understood. It was only my eighth anniversary, and the fact that my husband had lived only five months after we married, caused it to seem, to some, like it had never happened.
I didn’t spend the day crying. I taught my Bible study, and went to the cemetery. Later I went to Olive Garden for soup and salad. Cecil’s and my first date was at the Olive Garden. I don’t think I Knew it was a date. After seventy-six years I had given up any such idea. I just thought we were two old, and I do mean old, friends getting together for dinner.
Much to my great surprise, and not a little terror, I began to understand that, after all these years, God had sent this precious man, a man who loved me, into my life. I was no longer alone. Tamping down my fear, and giving up to love, we married.
Those five months were oh, so sweet for the two of us. Five Months! Then Cecil was gone. WHY? I don’t know why. Having walked with God all these years, I could say, “It was God’s will,” and I’m sure it was, but then there’s another, “WHY?” After I had waited so long, after we had been married such a short time, why did God WILL to take Cecil away?
It was beyond my understanding. To this day I don’t understand it. In the beginning, in the midst of my grief, I vowed that I would one day question God, and demand an answer for my loss. However, I realize that, when I stand before Him, it won’t matter anymore. My loss will have been forgotten.
In this life, we all face many things that are beyond our understanding—both the good and the bad. As human beings, we like to think that we are able to understand everything, but that is not the case. There are just some things beyond our comprehension.
I just read about Stephen M. Barr, who is a theoretical physicist. He is researching Grand Unified Theories and Baryogenesis and the Flipped Scheme of Unification. I don’t have any idea what any of that means, and—(Just so you know, I read about Stephen Barr because, as a scientist, He believes that science and faith can coexist, and that modern scientific discoveries are compatible with religion.) there’s so much more that is beyond my understanding.
I don’t understand this computer that I sit before at the moment, and I have used it for years. I am always amazed that somewhere inside this thing are the answers to any kind of question I wish to ask. Oh, I know it was programmed that way, but how in the world did the guys that programmed it know what I need to know?
It is not, however, my lack of knowledge and understanding of this technological age that bothers me. In fact, recently a youngster offered to help me navigate some new computer program, but I said, “No, I don’t want to learn anything else,” and I didn’t at that moment. At the age of 85, that’s my prerogative.
It is the unsolvable problems that occur and the unexpected situations that arise in my everyday life that stymies us. This pandemic that, in one year, has changed every area of our lives is surely beyond understanding. BUT! God is in control, and I know that He knows what is going on. He sees and understands the whole sorry mess. That is what keeps me going.
Isaiah 55:8-9 says, “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways My ways,” says the Lord. “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.”
Job was a man who suffered many unexpected things losing everything even his health. He knew that troubles come to men, but he certainly did not understand why he suffered this trial, and he told God so. But he determined early on in his trials that he would seek God, and commit all to Him. Why? Because he knew God did great things and unsearchable, marvelous things without number.
The Message says it this way. Job 5:8-9, “If I were in your shoes, I’d go straight to God. I’d throw myself on the mercy of God. After all, he’s famous for great and unexpected acts, there’s no end to his surprises.”
Seem to me that is great advice. I don’t know what incomprehensible trial you are facing today. It’s all right to be honest with God. Like Job, tell him how you feel. Then, knowing He is in control, cast all your care on Him, for it is He who does great, unexpected, marvelous things.
Just as our trials are beyond understanding, so also are the wondrous things He does for those who love Him. Not because we deserve it, but because He is a God of mercy.
I am determined to depend upon Him even in the darkest of times.
REMEMBER, THE SUN WILL COME OUT TOMORROW!