It’s been a silent week.
Not in the sense that I haven’t interacted with people or done work or spent time with friends. It’s more like I know God’s there, but he’s not speaking. And that’s OK. We are sitting in the silence together.
Last Sunday, as we were celebrating Christ’s resurrection, he chose to take a precious little life from this earth to be with him in Glory. Tori was the 19 month old daughter of some friends, and I was just one of thousands who had fallen in love with her. Before she was even born and her mama would share the ultrasound photos, we were oohing and aahing over her beauty. When she was born, we oohed and aahed some more over her stunning eyes and rosebud mouth. Ever the photographer, her mama would grace the internet with her precious image so that much more than just family could gaze upon her beauty. Even before that awful genetic disorder reared its ugly head, Tori’s tribe was gathering.
Then, just when Tori should have been learning to roll over and pull herself up to the cheers of her many admirers, her responsive little face stopped responding. The smile had gone. Her cooing had stopped. Her big beautiful eyes remained, but her once animated expression was fading. Within a matter of days her parents learned their precious daughter was dying.
Over the next year, I witnessed the most awful, terrible, beautiful thing. As her health began to deteriorate, Tori’s parents were not bitter. They were not angry. They were filled with grace and trust in a God who had let them down. Yes, they must have had overwhelming sad moments. They are human, after all. But we watched as they now embarked on a journey of grace, filled with happy times and even joy.
Where does this come from?
When God doesn’t obey our commands (i.e. prayer requests), what are we left with? We are left with the silence. But in the silence, he is still there.
In the silence, God is still there. He is.
Tori is healed and whole now and most likely sitting on Jesus’ lap, telling all the other kids about how she did more things on her bucket list before she was two years old than most people do in a lifetime.
We are left with the silence. When I say, “but God, what about that dream you gave me that Tori was healed?”
When I look at my sweet grandson who came into the world just a month after Tori did, I see a whole, healthy child and ask, “why them, God? How did you see fit to spare our family this heartache?”
But somehow, the silence is filled with peace. The kind of peace we will never understand. In those moments, God is silent. But he is present.
He sits with us in the silence.
And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Tori’s story is far from over. Her parents are committed to keeping her memory alive and raising awareness for newborn screening for Krabbe disease. Follow their journey at thebrackbills.com