I led Sunday School again on Sunday and I shared the following quotation from Stan Saunders’ book “Preaching the Gospel of Matthew.”
“Again in these stories we see God’s sovereign control of the events that lead to Jesus’ death and resurrection. The human actors…all play their roles of their own volition, seeking their own ends and fully responsible for the choices they make. And yet God is at work in all these choices and actions…God’s sovereignty does ensure that justice and salvation come, despite and through our actions of betrayal.” (p.281) I understand that Stan was referring to Judas betrayal, Peter’s denial and all the other characters in the crucifixion story but it got me thinking about the sovereignty of God in my own life and in the lives of other brain injury survivors.
God’s sovereignty and my TBI isn’t a new idea for me. I’ve thought about this a lot. Why did God allow my accident to happen? I liked my life before. I spent my days going to meetings, leading worship, planning youth group meetings and all the other things my job required. When I had my accident, I was in the process of searching for a position in the church where I could do more pastoral care, community ministry and preaching. In fact, my husband Michael had to handle phone calls from folks interested in interviewing me while I was still in the hospital learning how to speak and walk again. It was a difficult and horrible time.
I’ve heard many survivor’s say, “God allowed this to happen for a reason. I’m a much better person now.” I respectfully disagree. I can’t serve a God who would allow me to learn how to speak and walk again just because God has some great plan for me. I can’t serve a God who destroyed all my dreams just so God could use me in some way. That isn’t a God who cares about me and loves me. That is a selfish God.
God didn’t allow this to happen so I could learn something. I don’t understand why bad things happen to folks but I do know that God is with me now helping me as I lead my new life. I’ve learned what it is like to talk to my neighbors when I can work out in the garden in the middle of the day. My TBI doesn’t allow be to attend long and boring meetings now so I don’t have to do that. I’ve also learned how it feels to not “fit in” so I can relate to others in the same situation.
God is with me while I’m here in Holland. (see Welcome to Holland 2.9.11 post) I miss Italy but there are some things here that are pretty special. While I’m not grateful for my TBI, I am grateful for what God is teaching me through it.
(see http://lovethatmax.com for a wonderful interview with the woman who wrote the poem “Welcome to Holland.”)
How do you see God’s actions in your brain injury? Do you think God allowed it to happen for a reason or do you view it more as I do? See the top right hand corner for instructions about how to comment here. If you’d rather comment to me directly firstname.lastname@example.org