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Thursday, September 10, 2015

9-11, Faith, and Life's Toppling Towers

Hi Friends,

Today, I think back to where I was on September 11 fourteen years ago, I think of crashing airplanes and toppling towers, I remember the ache of ash and hopes buried in rubble.

It was a day that changed the world. 

And it reminds me of other days, days that changed MY world, or days that changed the world of those close to me. 

Planes still crash into the towers of our lives. There is still aches in ash and buried hope.  There are still moments when all we can do is weep.

But what do we do with those moments? How do we look on them with faith? How do we follow God in a broken world, with our broken lives?

This week, Jayden taught me something about that. With his new T1D diagnosis, there’s been toppling towers and rubbled days (and nights). 

But I’ve seen something in that little boy that shows me what faith really is. 

It happened like this:

Jayden will soon be getting a device to help measure his glucose in a more continuous way. He’ll have to wear the device all the time, inserting it fresh into his skin at least once a week. He’ll have to carry a receiver and ... here’s the good news ... an iPhone so that the data can be sent to up to 5 other phones. I’ll be able to monitor him from a distance! But he’s going to have to wear the pokey device. 

He didn’t want to wear the pokey device.  That is, until we told him he could have his very own iPhone if he agreed to wear the device! That’s all it took to convince him. However, his 10-year-old sister was not so thrilled. She’s been wanting a phone for years. We keep saying no. So, in her frustration, she blurts out, “I wish I had diabetes!”

And then Jayden did an amazing thing.  He didn’t tell her “No you don’t!” or complain about the difficulties of diabetes. He didn’t get mad. He didn’t fuss.  He just looked at her with a bland “don’t be dumb” look and said:  "God gives you diabetes. You don't just give it to yourself!" 

I stopped in my tracks. I might have said, “God didn’t give you diabetes.” But I didn’t say that. I couldn’t. Because Jayden wasn’t blaming God for his diabetes. Instead he was submitting himself to the sovereignty of God is his life. 

God could have prevented his diabetes. God did not. And Jayden accepted that fact without anger or blaming or trying to excuse God in any way. He chose to walk in faith, trusting God in whatever came his way.

And I stood stunned because a little boy said “God gives you diabetes” not in a I'm-mad-at-God way, but in a You-accept-what-God-gives-you sort of way. He's six years old and he was teaching his sister that you take what God gives you in life and you don't whine about it.

I need that kind of faith.

Perhaps it’s best summed up by something a dear friend said to me this week. She’s in the midst of fighting breast cancer and just had her first surgery to remove lumps. She said: 

"I think I'm going through some cycles of grief, as in denial right now, feeling like this can't be happening to me.  Yet, why not?  Why not me?  All of us have struggles...  It's what's been given to us in a fallen world, our vehicles for glorifying God and becoming more like Christ." 

Our toppling towers are what’s given us in a fallen world. They are our vehicles for glorifying Christ. This is what Faith looks like on this anniversary of 9-11.


Ardell Fair said...

Thank you for sharing! God gives you such beautiful wisdom, because you search diligently and use His gifts well.
Lovingly, Ardell

Marlo Schalesky said...

Thank you, Ardell! You have encouraged me today. :-)