Tuesday, April 17, 2012

"Why does God allow innocent children to die?"

~ by Cherie Houston, Journey from Mourning to Joy, LHC, AZ

I’m certainly not a theologian or philosopher or grief counselor; I am simply a mom, who after the deaths of 3 children, still ask this question…

I remember watching an interview with Bill Cosby when he was asked about the death of his 27 year old son Ennis, who was shot to death in Los Angeles January 16, 1997. He said that he is often asked what and how hi friends and family had done to help comfort him and what if any, words had helped..  "No words can help" he often says, but one comment he seems to vividly remember, was a comment that most of us have heard since our children have died.. You know the one when we are told that “what has happened to us was God's will”. Bill Cosby said he always answers this comment with “I choose not to consider God carrying out his will with a bullet to my son's head."

I think we all agree with his response, that there is no way that it is "God's Will" to watch our children or us suffer….

When a child dies, whether during a pregnancy, shortly after birth, when they are very young or into adulthood ~ the death of a child isn’t something that God does to punish us, to watch us or them suffer, or an action that God caused or was too busy to help with...

When our children first die, I do agree that the most natural response for almost every parent is WHY??? Why did God let this happen? Why did God make this happen? Why didn’t God step in and stop this from happening?

Personally, after the deaths of three children, I have learned to believe that God didn’t make or let this happen to any of my children, but I believe with all my heart that he was there and welcomed them home..

I’m not saying I didn’t blame God – or get angry at God – and there are still days when I have to admit I still get angry and I’m never quite sure who's going to be the receiver of that anger(including God and my poor husband Dan), because there are still days (31 months since Bobby's death and more than 40 years since my daughers died) that I still can’t wrap my head around the fact that my two beautiful little girls who died when they were infants in the early 1970's and now my 36 year old son Bobby who died in September 2009, are truly gone from this earth...

But I do hope, knowing that death – like birth – is a fact of life, that God – whatever God or heavenly spirit we each believe in, is and will always be there to help me and each of us deal with what life brings…

We all know, that there is nothing that anyone can say to us when we are coping with the death of our children that will help… We simply wish people would understand that it isn’t what they do, or what they say that’s important - it's their patience with us that helps..

When we lose our children, like it or not, we are numb, we are incapacitated and we are angry… Although these emotions fade, they are with us forever.. The best thing others can do for us, is simply be there – let us talk about our children, let us ask our Why's? Don't ask us if we are "over it yet" - Understand that we will ask Why? for as long as need to ~ Eventually – the strength of those emotions will fade – but know that they never go away entirely, we need to feel them..

I pray that our family and friends understand this as best they can and with their help, and the help of God, we can face the future, with peace, without our children……..

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