I've been thinking a lot about my miscarriages lately. When they first happened, I blanked them from my mind. Just forget, get over it, move on. Then, months later, guilt started creeping up. What if I had done this differently? Should I have done that? And now, most recently, comes an understanding.
People like to think that if they do x, y, and z, if they live their lives according to whatever checklist, then good things will come their way. God will bless them. It makes sense. I mean, you hear all the time, God wants to bless you. So if I don't perceive that I'm being blessed, I must be doing something to get in His way.
Only, in my reality, life doesn't work that way. Good people die from cancer. Bad people keep on living to screw up more lives. I lose my baby. Another girl smokes meth through the first trimester and into the second, and the baby's born healthy.
It's even more frustrating because this body, this tent that I live in, is mine. Or so I think. I feed it, I exercise it, I've lived in it for three decades. I know it pretty well. So when a baby starts growing inside of you, and then suddenly stops growing for no apparent reason, it's hard to take that you didn't do something to cause it. Or couldn't have done anything to prevent it.
But I didn't cause the miscarriages. And I couldn't have prevented them. So there you have it. Where can I go from here, this place of recognition that I have absolutely no control over this thing we call life? I can't cause life, I can't will it into existence.
This understanding that I'm not in control has led to a deeper understanding that the only One in control is God. He gives. He takes away. He is God in Heaven. I'm not. I don't understand why He does things, or allows things to happen. But it's not my place to question Him, any more than it is my kids' place to question me, when I can see so much more clearly through my greater experience and knowledge.
So the question then becomes, do I trust Him? Do I trust Him when my baby dies? Do I trust Him when my dear friend dies from cancer, leaving three teenagers? Do I trust Him with my present circumstances and my future plans? Do I, in other words, have faith.
How about you? Do you control? Or trust?
(edited to add August 2013) ---
I'm digging around my blog, looking for old posts about my miscarriages, when I came across this one. It still rings very true to my heart, except for the last bit, where I wrote, 'it's not my place to question Him'. I used to believe this, but I have come in my journey to a place where questioning is an important and valuable part of my faith. I don't think God sits back when I ask him, 'Why' and says, 'How dare you question or doubt ME?!' God can see more clearly, and dwelling on the 'why' too much can lead down a dark road of guilt and shame, but I don't want to discount the importance of the freedom to question and doubt.