Not at all photography related… Just me related… This is probably too personal… Like the kind of personal that makes other people uncomfortable… Pretty sure that ranks high on the business don’ts. But this is the platform that is available to me and writing is healing.
This week is the most dreaded week in my calendar. Sometimes I can distract myself through it and sometimes I wallow. Most of the time I do a little of each. Today I went with a group of kids from our church to volunteer to make lunch for the Ronald McDonald House. Fitting… But hopefully no-one staying there today had to face what we faced eleven years ago. Hopefully no-one had to give up on their hope of a miracle today.
Eleven years ago, after 48 hours of life support, after 48 hours of the prayers by so many people, after multiple organs starting to fail, after the doctor saying that there is no signs of brain activity, we had to give up on our hope of a miracle… or at least we had to give up on the miracle we were hoping for.
The funny thing is that when I watch a movie where a family is having to make the decision to turn off the machines, I reflexively say, “I can’t even imagine…” But I don’t have to imagine, I lived it. That moment when all of the evidence laid out before you say that there is no hope. That moment when all of the evidence very clearly shows that the decision that you are making is the sane logical decision. The evidence might even lead you to believe that continuing with treatment is cruel and self serving and you are asked to make a decision… the impossible decision.
But I was hoping for a different outcome…
I was hoping to be one of those unexplainable stories that speaks of the rewards diligent prayer…
I was hoping for the sort of recovery that dumfounds the medical staff.
I was hoping for the sort of testimony of God’s power that ends up being retold over and over.
I was hoping for a miracle…
The miracle that I had envisioned for never came.
I think that most people at some time or another has had to give up on a miracle. It is an excruciatingly hard thing to do. Did you wait long enough? Did you pray hard enough? Is God there? Does God care? Is my faith not big enough?
Nothing tests your faith like unanswered prayers… like having to give up on miracles.
The crazy thing is that eleven years later, I can see my miracle. The people that gathered around me to support me during that time were perfectly placed in my life with just the right skills, experience and personality traits that matched my needs. My faith has grown immensely in the last eleven years. Like an underused muscle, a faith that isn’t tested, stretched and worked, is a weak, deteriorating faith.
I know that I am not the only person who has had to give up on a miracle. Sadly, I am in a sizable group. I wish I knew why some people get the miracles they hope for and some people don’t, but I don’t. I do know that relinquished miracles are our opportunity to share each other’s burdens and enter into each other’s lives. If we all lived lives full of prayers answered the way we think that they should be answered, we wouldn’t need each other… We wouldn’t need God.