You know what I’ve really appreciated the past 8 days? My dirty kitchen. It is so normal. The laundry pile. School work. Soccer practice. Vacuuming. Messes. Sibling arguments. Busy schedules. All of the normal.
When there is a tragedy, normal tasks are a blessing. Does this even make sense? It’s just that the things I might normally complain about (dirty dishes and all of the above) became something I was so thankful to be dealing with this past week. After all, my cousins were in the hospital watching their 16 year old son fight for his life. Just days before, they had been doing all of the normal. How we long for the normal when suddenly nothing is normal.
Friday, September 11 our 16 year old cousin sustained a head injury on the football field. He slipped into a coma, underwent surgeries, became weaker, continued to lose ground. I’ve never been so obsessed with Facebook. It was my link to my cousins in Oklahoma when all we could do here in Nebraska was pray and watch for updates from those who were at Ben’s bedside.
Here’s what I watched transpire: All of us who knew Ben were praying. We all asked others for prayer. Others began praying. Word spread. People who didn’t know Ben began praying. In just a few days, I watched as thousands and thousands of people shared that they were praying. Most were praying for a family they didn’t know and for a boy they’d never meet.
This is love, this is Jesus in the heart of people, and this is powerful.
God answered our prayers, but He didn’t let us keep Ben. He healed Ben fully, but not in the way we all asked. Ben is whole again, but he’s not home with his family. He is in his new home. His forever home.
Should we ask why? It never hurts to ask. Will we ever know? Does it even matter?
God’s plan for our lives, for Ben’s life, for the life of Ben’s family – God’s plan is absolute. Even if it hurts and even if it doesn’t make sense to us. We choose to trust God through the pain.
As we mourn our devastating loss of Ben, we are in awe of the beauty of God and His work in and through His people.
Because of this one boy – this boy and his family who are so loved by so many – thousands and thousands of people got on their knees and talked to the Creator last week.
Because of this one boy and his family, thousands of people are still on their knees, pleading for comfort and peace for Ben’s family. Tears are being shed, love is being shown, and Jesus is being glorified.
Praise be to God for the heart of His people.
May we not wait for tragedy to renew our relationship with our Creator. May we stay humbly and joyfully on our knees as we recognize the truth of the strength this provides.
Praise God with me for the life of this one boy – the one who brought so many into precious communion with others and with the Father this week.
We’re gonna miss you, Ben.