This morning on my way to church I was listening to WBFJ, our local Christian radio station. Yesterday one of their DJs died suddenly. As you can imagine, the "feel" of the station is very somber. It's been painful to listen to at moments. And, as a listener, I, too, felt like I knew this guy even though I'd never met him. (Funny how even local celebrities end up as part of our lives.)
As the people on air were praying for his wife and kids, I started thinking about how unbelievably hard that would be. I've actually been thinking a lot about death lately. My step-mother, Mary, is in the final stages of fighting cancer. Even thinking about her no longer being with us makes me tear up. (Side note: this should also explain why my eye makeup constantly looks like crap these days.)
The more I think about death (which happens to be a lot), the more I get overwhelmed. I think about the other people I'm close to in life- my husband, my family, my BFFs- and think about how I can't imagine a world without them, either.
So all of this if floating around in my brain as I'm listening to the radio this morning and I have this thought: "I would not be able to make it without Dan." I have this gut-wrenching heart check, which is quickly followed up with what I think was the Lord speaking to me: "Yes, you could. I would be there for you."
Now before you think I'm all "it would be a bed of roses" if something happened to my husband, let me tell you that I, too, was shocked by that thought. I was shocked that I felt God saying that I *would* survive something that big. I would have to, I'd have E to take care of. And while I don't even like to think about what that would look like (and my heart hurts even writing this), I think that He is right... I would be okay, because God would take care of me.
(Enter sappy Christian music playing in the background, beginning to swell because you think I am about to have some profound thought about how I love God more than any human and I'm a good Christian...)
The next immediate thought I had went something like this: "Maybe I could survive that... but I could NOT survive something happening to Elizabeth."
Yep. He (God) loves it when I call the shots.
I drove on, content in thinking my thoughts about how there is no way I would be able to function for time and all eternity if something happened to my little girl. (And before you again start playing sappy background music, I'll skip to the punchline and tell you that I'm still in this mode. I have not reasoned that I would be able to function, so heads' up.)
I got to MOMS, fixed myself a cup of tasty coffee, got my tasty plate of food, and sat down among friends and neighbors... ready to hear what Dr. Satterwhite had to say. (He's a local pediatrician who came to talk to us this morning about parenting.) Already I'd moved on from the internal discussion about death/children/family/functioning.
Dr. Satterwhite was amazing. His teaching will be posted here once it gets edited. You should all download it and hear it. Seriously. Fantastic.
But one of the things that struck me the most was his point that (in parenting, in life, whatever) God is on the throne and I am not. Not a new concept, I get that... He followed it up with something along the lines of "when you try to put your will in the lives of your children, it's as if you are saying 'God, scoot over... I got this one covered'." Ouch.
That's totally me.
He said LOTS of things I needed to hear (again, download it... you won't be disappointed), but a gentle follow-up from my earlier mind-conversation was clear. If I trust God to get me through ____ (death, life, health, healing), why would I not trust Him with ALL things... even Elizabeth's life? (gulp.) I need to momma-up and daily release my daughter to Him. Clearly, He's in control anyway, but my acknowledging it will be healthy for me, for E, for my whole family to see.
I'm not quite sure how this will all play out... but as much as I'm sure God enjoys sharing His throne with me, I think I'll scoot on back off it, and leave the controlling the universe to Him. He seems to have done an okay job so far, so I'll go back to doing dishes and planning a birthday party and leave the rest to Him.
He loves it when I do that.