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What started out as a site to update on our daughter's cancer has thankfully grown into a site to update on our beautiful family of four. Enjoy our journey...

Monday, October 19, 2009

earned blessings

I walked away from church on Sunday feeling really good about the message I heard and I wanted to share it.

Our message was about earned blessings...or rather that there are none. The bottom line is that good things happen to good people, but bad things happen to good people too. Those of us who faithfully pray, attend church, and do all the right things still have bad things in our world. Those of us who attend confession, take communion, attend every mass there is, and volunteer for every cause there is will still have bad things that happen to us. That is life. It is easy for us, myself included, to fall into the "why me" trap and wonder why our God could do "this" to us. But it is important for us to remember that we are but a small piece of God's puzzle and "who are we to question His plan"?

There have been many times in my life that I have asked "why does this happen" and several times I could have screamed at the top of my lungs "why has God done this to me". I am not saying I haven't asked these questions as I cry myself to sleep a time a two - but it never ceases to amaze me how down the road the picture can be so crystal clear.

In 1999 Chad was in a "terrible" accident. I was one week past turning 18, I was not equipped to deal with that. And, if I had to do it again I am not sure so sure I could! But, I was just naive enough to manage without much damage to either Chad or I. While in college I would often double as college student and girlfriend/nurse when needed. Weeks before our wedding I had surgery to have my thyroid removed because of a "tumor" that my doctor found, which turned out to be nothing more than a scary cyst. A week after that Chad had a pretty invasive surgery (again) and we weren't sure how he would make it through the entire big day of our wedding! He was sick on our wedding day, and suffered through our first dance!! These are the little things that seemed kind of big at the moment! Then...Charli was diagnosed with cancer. I quickly realized that all that "crap" we dealt with to make it through Chad's ordeal was simply 'on the job training' for what our life was going to go through in the coming months. Having said that, it does kind of make me worry what that was training us for!! But even now, I can see the good Charli has done through her cancer. The lives she has touched have been countless and still counting.

God works small and large miracles and while sometimes the blessings and curses can be the same, in the end God is always there to pick us up and dust us off to start new. And it is important to realize that we are not in control, we have never been in control. None of us get what we "deserve", as our pastor put it Sunday -- none of us deserve to be where we are, we all have what we have because we have been given gifts from God. Our education, knowledge, skill set, and personal traits are all gifts from God, He gave them to us, deserving or not. I can only think of how different my life would be if I only had the things I "deserved" rather than the abundant gifts from God I have.

I am sorry if this was rambling...I just really wanted to share the message from Sunday and the entire time he was talking about blessings all I could do was hold Charli, look at her, and smile in amazement of the blessing God delivered in our first born and wonder...what have we done to deserve this, and then I was quickly reminded that I didn't do anything, she is a gift.


Sheila Ferrell said...

She truly is a gift! And so are you! We never truly know how and who we touch.
“To know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived - that is to have succeeded” Ralph Waldo Emerson
I love this quote. I want to have a positive impact to those that my life crosses whether it be a small or large way. At Walmart yesterday getting an oil change and the guy at the counter was getting an incoming call that needed further information. I could tell he wasn't sure who he should help first and I told him to go ahead, I was fine with waiting. He seemed surprised and then grateful that I was someone that understood.
Even for a short moment in time, I made a difference to someone and it humbles me to know that I AM a gift too.

Rachelle said...

Everything we have all been through in our lives shapes who we have become today. My mother always tells me the good Lord doesnt give us more than we can handle. Sometimes I question this but I believe it is true. He chooses our paths for us and leaves it up to us to decide how we travel on them. Everything happens for a reason - we just have to find out what that reason is and do the best we can. Thank you for sharing such a heartfelt honest post Brenda. I will hug my beautiful gifts a little closer tonight.

The Hudcaps said...

As I listened to the seromon I couldn't help but hink about you guys and some of the families we work with. And how it applies to our lives. It was one of my favorite messages I've ever heard in church. God Bless.

Natalie said...

Charli is a wonderful gift from God, and not just to you, but to all the people whose lives she continues to touch. Thank you (& God) for sharing her with all of us!
I think I shall read this post everyday when I start to wonder why...and remember that God is preparing us for something so special, so perfect, so un-deserved...a precious gift.

Grma and Grmpa Preister said...

Amen, Amen...XXXXOOOO

Jenny said...

Hi! Just wanted to say that you have such beautiful children :) and that your story really touched me!

Hugs //Jenny from Sweden