Death in the light of the goodness of God

I wrote in my journal the other day,

What you believe about God, effects how you fight.

On Monday, April 26, 2010 it will be exactly one year since Nevaeh passed away. Her life was something that I fought for in the place of prayer for 19 months. Her death was not what I prayed for, believed for or fought for. This past year has given many moments to reflect and consider if what I believed about God was true. The temptation has often been to change what I believe about God in order to make sense of what happened to Nevaeh. But no matter how hard I try, I can't do that and I won't. Even though I now know the outcome of her life I wouldn't change one prayer that I prayed or one tear that I shed in asking for her life. She was worth the fight, and I fought the way I did because of what I believed and still believe about God.

I have heard many peoples' thoughts and conclusions, including my own, of what it means about God because she is gone. I often walk away completely frustrated because in ones' conclusion there is often a complete denial of another aspect/attribute of God. Last night I read something that for me brought together the conflict in my heart and mind to a place where I believe truth is accurately being represented. The following is from Bonhoeffer by Eric Metaxas; it is from a letter Bonhoeffer wrote to members of the Confessing Church as he announced yet another death of the pastoral community:

To be sure, God shall call you, and us, only at the hour that God has chosen.
Until that hour, which lies in God's hand alone, we shall all be protected even
in greatest danger; and from our gratitude for such protection ever new readiness surely arises for the final call.

Who can comprehend how those whom God takes so early are chosen? Does
not the early death of young Christians appear to us as if God were
plundering his own best instruments in a time in which they are most needed?
Yet the Lord makes no mistakes. Might God need our brothers for some
hidden service on our behalf in the heavenly world? We should put
an end to our human thoughts, which always wish to know more than they
can, and cling to that which is certain. Whomever God calls home is someone
God has loved. "For their souls were pleasing to the Lord, therefore he took them
quickly from the midst of wickedness" (Wisdom of Solomon 4).

We know, of course, that God and the devil are engaged in battle in the world and
that the devil also has a say in death. In the face of death we cannot simply speak in some fatalistic way, "God wills it"; but we must juxtapose it with the other reality, "God does not will it." Death reveals that the world is not as it should be but that it stands in need of redemption. Christ alone is the conquering of death. Here the sharp antitheses between "God wills it" and "God does not will it" comes to head and also finds its resolution. God accedes to that which God does not will, and from now on death itself must serve God. From now on, the "God wills it" encompasses even the "God does not will it." God wills the conquering of death through the death of Jesus Christ. Only in the cross and Resurrection of Jesus Christ has death been drawn into God's power, and it must serve God's own aims. It is not some fatalistic surrender but rather a living faith in Jesus Christ, who died and rose for us, that is able to cope profoundly with death. (pg 383-384)


  1. Wow... how incredibly deep, I had to read it a couple of times to actually understand it (maybe it's just my mommy brain right now). Thanks for sharing and once again giving me something to think about, as well as encouraging.

  2. I can't even imagine your grief with losing Nevaeh. I went through all your posts with her name and my heart goes out to you and all her family members. She is absolutely beautiful.

    Your thoughts on 'God wills it' was remarkable. I will be meditating on them for days.


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