Sunday, February 27, 2011

Good-bye, Daddy

My Dad is dying. When I asked my sister about flying next weekend, she said he wouldn't last that long. I talked to his doctor and she did not give a good prognosis. He is 88 and has been in the hospital for the last couple of weeks, first for a UTI, then he got aspirated pneumonia. Last I heard, he was unconscious and on a ventilator. He went into cardiac arrest, but they managed to bring him back.

I am holding tight to my faith. It's the only anchor in this storm. While I'm not mad at God, this is a challenge to my new Reformed beliefs about election. It's all well and good until it's brought home to your family. I am wrestling with God over this.

God brought me through the whole issue with K. back in 2004. He held onto me when I had no strength to hold onto Him. He will bring me through this, too. I will be okay, but I am not okay now.

Over the last couple of weeks I've been praying for a grace from God that I would be able to see Dad before he dies to say good-bye. Starting the end of last week I felt that God was telling me to fly to Seattle now. Then the call came Saturday morning and I had to hurry to arrange a trip. Perhaps going now is the answer to that prayer. I know I don't deserve this (or any) grace from God, but I would very much like this, so I asked.

I have not lost sight of who my true Father is, one who does not die and will always be there for me.

I am leaving tomorrow morning (Monday, Feb. 28). I will be gone one week and plan to fly home on Monday, March 7. Today I stumbled over a YouTube video series of Steven Curtis Chapman & his family on Larry King Live back in 2008 after the death of their five year old daughter. If they can get through something as unexpected as that, I can certainly get through this. Death is a part of life, but that doesn't make it easier.

I have been encouraged by something Lysa TerKeurst said about death, that it is merciful of God to let us die. The alternative would be to live forever in this sinful, fallen world. We have a promise of a perfect world without sin or death, but it is not here now, so death is a mercy to keep us from suffering forever.

There will be no funeral, so the rest of the family will not be flying in. I will love and miss you all. I will NOT be online much, if any, for the next week (i.e. don't send any game requests).

I would appreciate any and all prayers. I will be staying with my sister in Seattle. Neither her nor my Dad are saved, and April and I are both suffering right now. Pray that God saves Dad and that I get a chance to say good-bye before he dies. Pray for my sister and I as we navigate this painful journey.

I cried myself to sleep last night. My grief was so deep that I couldn't even pray. The only words that came to mind were lines from the songs I listened to and just a general, "God, help me!" Thank God for Michael Card, Rich Mullins, and Casting Crowns. They have captured my prayers in song and it has been a great comfort in this time of sorrow.

"I will praise You in this storm, and I will lift my hands,
For You are who You are, no matter where I am."
--Casting Crowns

"Hold me, Jesus, 'cause I'm shaking like a leaf.
You have been King of my Glory, won't You be my Prince of Peace."
--Rich Mullins

"Jesus, hold me now,
I need to feel You in this place,
To know You're by my side,
And hear Your voice tonight."
--Casting Crowns

All praise and glory to You, Father. Please walk with me through this.

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