Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Reconciling the Difference

As I continue to muddle my way through grief and make sense of the life and death of Joshua (no one tells you that grief lasts this long! jeesh!!!), I come back to reconciling the differences between what life would have been like with Joshua and what life is like without Joshua.

It's a difficult concept to think about- the differences of life that "should have been" and life that "is."

I often find myself wishing that Joshua was still here. I wouldn't care if he was still sick, just as long as he was here. But then I find my mind wandering to what life would be like with him here.

Before he was born, we were on the verge of bankruptcy. We were drowning in debt. We depended on me working full time, and with the lack of teaching jobs as well as a critically ill child who couldn't be in childcare, we weren't sure how we were going to make it. If I think realistically about it, we were on the verge of losing everything- our house, our cars, any chance at a decent credit score and financial stability. All of that was going to be gone. We would be living in my parents basement trying to make ends meet.

Joshua would have needed life long care. In his immediate future, he would require a minimum of 2 more open heart surgeries. He could end up in the ER for catching a common cold. He would need frequent cardiology visits. Our lives would revolve around keeping him healthy and trying to figure out a way to pay for it all.

When I think about if he had lived, I often find myself feeling really sad for the life that we would have lived.

However, he didn't live. And here we are, 2 years later. Our family is thriving financially (don't get me wrong- there are some weeks that we have $5 to last us until Friday). My children are able to participate in sports and dance. We have 2 dependable cars. I can stay home with my children. We have a new and healthy baby. We are now living in a new, custom built home. We are living debt free.

Life is going well. We are comfortable. We are moving forward.

But this is where the problem lies. When I think about if Joshua had lived- or more appropriately, when I wish that Joshua had lived, I have a hard time thinking that Lukey would not be here (I needed that baby more than I could ever know!) If Joshua had lived, we wouldn't be in our new home. We wouldn't be in a new city with great school systems, relatively low crime, and nice neighborhoods. We would still be drowning in debt, living in my parents basement. My older children would be living in poverty.

If I'm going to be honest here (please don't judge me), I'm not sure I would go back to it. Don't get me wrong. I wanted my son to live more than anything, and our family was willing to make the sacrifices it needed to make to give Joshua the care that he needed, Lukey, no home, no living life debt free, no deep spiritual growth through the trials.

So this  is where I struggle. God is and was fully capable of giving us all of those wonderful things. Why did it have to be through my son's death? Why did it have to come with such heartache? Why did it have to come at such a cost?

I struggle to reconcile the differences between what should have been and what is. I struggle to understand why it had to happen the way that it did.

 But then, I'm reminded:

I'm reminded that God saved us. God sacrificed HIS SON for our sins. He could have done it differently, but He didn't. Jesus himself knew that God could take the cross from Him, but he trusted in his father's plans for him and for the world.

God's ways don't make sense to me. I don't think they are supposed to. Often times I wonder if they did make sense to me, if I would truly be ok with the reasons- I don't think I would. But God's way is perfect. Even when it causes heartache and pain, God's plan for our life is good.

So, when doubt comes, I just need to continue to remind myself that it doesn't need to be reconciled. Jesus's blood already did that for me. I just need to have faith and trust in a God that is good and fair and just. I need to remember the love of a God who sent his son to die for me.


  1. I know in our "dreamland" Joshua would be here, doing as well as possible, your finances would also have been miraculously solved, thereby still enabling you to have your home & not live in poverty....but...
    But...would you have Lukey?? And would Joshua's health issues mean that he would always be the family focus, "pushing" the other kids & their needs to the side as much as you would try not to do so...
    This is why the "what

  2. finger hit "publish"!!"
    ... ~ … ~
    This is why the "what-ifs" and "if-only" games don't work...and why we trust that God is sovereign and that He alone sees the bigger picture that we cannot see.
    Of course I wish you could have had it all-a healed Joshua + Lukey + all these other blessings you've been given, but with you, I trust in the Lord.
    I continue to pray for you as you heal over the trauma of losing your precious baby boy. I love you!


© 2012 Designed by The Vintage Pear
© No content of this blog may be used or re-printed without written permission