*Before you get excited to read today, I must tell you that contrary to our blog's tagline, today's entry will not be funny. It will most assuredly be real. And it will be disgustingly true about the messiness of faith.
For the last five months, thousands of people have had ragged and bruised knees from praying, anger that has boiled in their heart, and tears have stained their faces and shirts.
For the last five months, thousands have seen a family endure the worst imaginable pain.
For the last five months, thousands have watched a precious 3 year old battle the unspeakable terror called cancer--a demon that deserves a much worse name.
And after five months, a little girl went Home yesterday.
I'm in the ministry and I should be able to tell people that "God has a plan" or that "all things work for the good of God", but today I just can't. You may call me a hypocrite or blasphemous, but my heart and mind just can't go there. At least not today. Maybe not tomorrow, maybe not next week. For today there is a war inside me as the clash of my great love and hope in Christ collides with the deep pain of knowing this baby girl is gone. I wrestle. I bawl my eyes out. I get so angry that the tears come more.
It just isn't fair.
We're smack in the middle of Holy Week and I'm called to boast in sufferings, be thankful for weaknesses, and rejoice in the Resurrection, but all I can think about is this little girl. I mean really God? Why her? Why this family? Do you not remember they have already lost one child? I know that this little girl has new life and is rejoicing in heaven, but the deep pit that is left here is hard to swallow. The cruelty it seems they have been handed is sometimes too hard to accept. I want to turn to God and I want to dive into scripture, but I just don't feel like it. I don't feel like it because cancer won and a girl lost.
My husband put it well though in a prayer yesterday that the battle has not been lost as Christ won over everything on the Cross. Jesus was able to fight and win over things such as cancer. Because of His triumph, He prepared a place for Stella. He prepared a small bed for her ( a pink one I'm hoping, perhaps with a huge canopy or slide off of it) to welcome her home. He prepared a place where she no longer had to suffer or fight and endure the pain of cancer. I cling to that. I cling knowing she is running, smiling, and that she has long hair flowing in the wind. I cling knowing that she is laughing as she has her stuff bunny nestled in her chest, walking hand in hand with her sister Charlotte, and alongside Jesus.
But the pain still lingers. And it probably will for awhile. This is what faith really is. It is extreme highs and extreme lows. It is messy and complicated. It is something we don't always understand.
While I don't understand His ways. I have to trust in His heart. I have to trust in His love even when I don't want to. And even though I don't much want to open my Bible or turn my face towards His, I know I must. I know the only true comfort can come from Him. I know that He is okay that I'm so mad at Him right now. I know He is fine with me taking my time. I know He can't wait for me to spend time with Him again. I know He can't wait to show me the celebration that Heaven is.
So on Easter Sunday, I will still feel saddened, but as I rejoice in the life of my Savior, I pray I can rejoice in the life Stella Rose has now.
And after 5 months, thousands lost a special little gril, but one little girl gained it all.
Please be in prayer for the Mulhearn family in the coming days and weeks.
*You can read Stella's story here: Stella Rose