Monday, May 7, 2012

Thoughts on God...

I'm a spiritual person....I'm not overly religious.  I don't attend church every Sunday......I've maybe attended 5 services in the 8 months that have passed since Catelyn died.  I do believe in God.  I do believe that God is good. 

For most of my life, I was a firm believer that "God only gives you what you can handle".  It wasn't until recently that I saw the flaw in my reasoning. 

Can you imagine how miserable it would be if God 'gave' us pain, heartbreak, upset and more?  No wonder people might turn their back on God.  Why would you want to believe in something or someone who caused you tremendous pain because 'you can handle it'? 

I read a book called 'The Shack: Where Tragedy Confronts Eternity' by William P. Young, recently, and I really found it inspiring and touching.  It was such an interesting read.  It truly gave me a new perspective about things that I already believed, and things I never imagined.

Well meaning friends and family have offered me the book 'Heaven is For Real', and while it's a good book, I could never bring myself past the fact that the little boy lived and my Catelyn died. 

In 'The Shack', though, the main character processes the, likely, brutal murder of his youngest child.  Along the way, he ends up meeting God in person....

I'll let you read the book for yourself, but it helped me realize something so important.  God doesn't give us what we can handle....God helps us handle what we're given.

Think about that for a second.

If God were to give us what we can handle, then we might feel either like God really trusts us to handle a lot (which can be very overwhelming), or we might even feel like God is vindictive and gives us obstacles because we deserve them for all of the wrongs we've done in our lives.  I've felt both ways....too many times to count.

Now, think about the other half....if God helps us handle what we're given, then it isn't that God is punishing us for our wrongs, and it isn't that God thinks that we are these ultra strong beings that can withstand the highest thresholds of pain possible.  Instead, God knows that we are going to be dealt crummy hands of cards in life, and instead of saying 'oh well, you can handle it, you can get through it, deal with it yourself', God says: 'I'm here.  Let me help you.  Turn to me.  Trust me.  Love me.  Believe in me.  Put your faith in me, and I will ease your pain, your burden, your problems.'

Spiritual or not, how freaking cool is that?

What a HUGE difference that change in perspective makes.  It makes dealing with Catelyn's death so much more bearable. 

The trick, of course, is learning to rely on God.  It's certainly not easy.  It's hard to believe in something you can't see directly.  It's hard to give up control over your own life (and I'm a huge control freak, so I think I know that pretty well).  It's hard to say 'I trust you'.  It's hard.

But, on the flip side, it is easier knowing that this wasn't something that was predetermined to happen in my life....that it wasn't some evil master plan to make me suffer, and that it didn't happen because I deserved it.  Yes, it happened.  Yes, it sucks.  Yes, it's hard to move on.  No, I'll never forget.

At the end of every day, I have continued support.  Sometimes it comes in the form of the people around me.  Sometimes it comes from songs, memories or books.  No matter where it comes from, I believe that it's God reminding me that I'm not alone....that my pain isn't my own to handle....that God won't leave my side.

Take from this message what you wish.  Disagree....  Agree.... It's up to you.    But at least you know how I feel.


  1. Great insights Tracy... you have a gift for expression. Keep this up - it is both beautiful and challenging! I would way rather take spiritual over "religious" and this is spiritual to the core.


  2. It's always easier to trust God when things are going great. It's when tragedies happen that we're stretched to our limit of trust.

    I think you hit the nail on the head, Tracy. Romans 5:2-5 "And we[a] rejoice in the hope of the glory of God. 3 Not only so, but we[b] also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; 4 perseverance, character; and character, hope. 5 And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us."

    There IS hope in our suffering. We were never meant to walk this journey alone. Know that you are loved, more than you will ever know. <3

  3. Your thoughts on God were very profound and made me think about what you said that God helps us handle things. I had never thought about it this way, but it is so true. Praying and trusting in God has always help me thru difficult times in my life. Thank you for sharing your thoughts. It really moved me. Also thank you for the invitation to your blog.