It has been a sad afternoon in our home. One of the kittens was accidently stepped on and died instantly.
It is hard. I've often thought, since their arrival here several weeks ago, "what a huge blessing it is to host a liter of kittens". One kitten is delightful, three have brought immense joy. I guess I fell in love with them somewhere around the three o'clock bottle feeding. We never knew how old they were when they showed up here hungry and scared. We poured our love in to them and they have multiplied it back. So ... Storm was especially my V's cat. Very difficult, knowing that this point of suffering also carries teachable moments I pray for words that might carry forward. Loss is an inevitable part of loving and I know from experience loss mishandled may stunt or twist our ability to give and receive love.
Coincidentally, I listened through my second Sunday school lesson on the topic of Loss/Suffering this very morning. While I do believe we come to experiences, learning experiences, when we are "ready" to learn, and sometimes even willing to do so ... lol ... I couldn't help but think (this morning, and last week as well) Boy, I sure would have liked to have understood these ideas way back when loss, rather then bringing me to my knees, brought me to my feet ... and I ran as far and fast as I could from the God who would allow these injustices to happen. Uh ... right speed, wrong direction ... ! My Dad did try to help me see a bit better, but I couldn't listen well. And then he died and I got even more tangled up in the mess that grief, um, misdirected or misunderstood or mis-something-ed grief constructed. The really good news is that God can handle it. And, God is faithful, like on focus (He does totally "get" the whole deal) and holds time in His hand. I like the idea of that and I have experienced the reality of that as well. There is mystery for me, but God gets the whole thing, and I can trust in that as I trust in Him.
...may as well make it large so I can easily read it while I tap out a few really good points ...
I think we'll be looking at some lessons we may learn from Job.
No matter what happens, God is in control.
... Creator of the Universe and all things within it and without ... yeah, I can buy the idea that God is in control. Also that there is a picture too large for me to see ... and that suffering is an unfortunate part of the working out of the Master Plan.
The second major point of the morning's lesson was;
God is just.
Yes, I do believe that too, I can not always work it out, but I do believe it. Not seeing the justice is a problem of perspective on my part rather then a lack of rightness on God's part.
A few weeks ago the Pastor said something like one potential response to pain/suffering is hostility towards God. And I thought uh huh, I know that's right. Not a right response, a right observation.
I particularly appreciated this closing comment on today's lesson:
"When we suffer there will be mystery, will there also be faith?"
The Lewis quote really resonated for me, where is that? Here
"To love at all is to be vulnerable. Love anything, and your heart will certainly be wrung and possibly be broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact, you must give your heart to no one, not even to an animal. Wrap it carefully round with hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements; lock it up safe in the casket or coffin of your selfishness. But in that casket - safe, dark, motionless, airless - it will change. It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable." ~C.S. Lewis