About a week and a half ago, my life got turned upside-down.
More accurately, my brother’s life did. But that in turn affected me.
Ricky had a massive aneurysm in his brain. He also had a stroke which left part of his brain very damaged. Last Sunday, I thought we were going to lose him. There was a possibility we were. The doctors told us we could.
But Heaven wasn’t ready for Ricky yet. God still has purpose on earth for that spunky 17-year-old.
I was really tossed up on how or what to blog about exactly when it came to this whole “situation.” What angle do I take? Do I tell it like a story? I remember the details like the untouched lukewarm tea on the waiting room table, the way my knee hurt from kneeling on it next to my parents as they received the worst news of the day, the staff in the food court who had no bedside manner at all, and countless other painful details.
But someone made a comment to me the other day that made me consider my perspective on the whole thing.
April 8th, there were hundreds–potentially thousands–of people praying for Ricky. He had a pretty hardcore surgery that lasted several hours, and there was a chance we could lose him. God heard the prayers of so many of His children and saved Ricky’s life. Now, this is not a discussion on “does prayer change God or does it just change me.” It is, however, about God’s sovereignty. His omniscience, His supremacy.
The other day I was sharing an update about Ricky with someone who told me they were praying for him. At one point I said, “We are thankful that he has such great doctors, but we know it’s only because of God that he is–”
This person interrupted me and said, “Well, I think it’s really equal. God and the doctors. He’s lucky to be at Johns Hopkins.”
I was a little taken aback. You just told me you were praying for him…did you even believe God could save his life?
But then I realized that sometimes I think the same way. The statement they made caused me to look at how I had been praying and thinking for the past week. Do I really believe God is the One in charge–the ONLY One? Is my faith split “equally”–medical staff and the Creator of the world? Does my worry about my brother and the care he gets take up more of my time than taking those worries to God?
The fact is that God knew all of this was going to happen before Ricky was born. He knew it would happen WHEN HE MADE THE WORLD. He knows everything! There is tremendous comfort in remembering that nothing catches God by surprise. And just as He knew–I daresay, LET–this happen, He was likewise preparing the neurosurgeons and nurses to take care of Rix someday. God is orchestrating so many things that we may never know or understand. We simply have to believe in faith that He is in control no matter what. If my brother hadn’t made it, we would still praise the One Who carried him to his eternal home. No matter what. Regardless of the situation, good or bad, God sees the end from the beginning. He is a good God Who only does good, even if I don’t think it’s necessarily “good” for me.
That’s the short version of my side of the story. I hope and pray that as we journey through this, God is glorified.
Thank you for reading, and most of all thank you to everyone who prays and reaches out to us. It means more than we can ever fully express.
I will bless the LORD at all times: his praise shall continually be in my mouth.
My soul shall make her boast in the LORD: the humble shall hear thereof, and be glad.
O magnify the LORD with me, and let us exalt his name together.
I sought the LORD, and he heard me, and delivered me from all my fears.
This poor man cried, and the LORD heard him, and saved him out of all his troubles.
O taste and see that the LORD is good: blessed is the man that trusteth in him.
The eyes of the LORD are upon the righteous, and his ears are open unto their cry.
The righteous cry, and the LORD heareth, and delivereth them out of all their troubles.
The LORD is nigh unto them that are of a broken heart; and saveth such as be of a contrite spirit.
Many are the afflictions of the righteous: but the LORD delivereth him out of them all.
– Psalm 34:1-4, 6, 8, 15, 17-19