"Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died." - John 11:21
There's no point in being dishonest with God. I've noticed in my own prayer life that I often harbor thoughts in the back of my mind - "Why did God let this happen?" "Why doesn't God fix this?" "Why isn't this easier?" - but I refrain from voicing these thoughts to God, choosing instead to pray something that sounds more holy and pious.
Today is All Saints Day, a day when we remember those who have passed before us and have achieved what our bodies and souls yearn for: seeing God face-to-face.
As I age, the list of saints I remember grows longer. Regrettably longer. My grandparents. My childhood pastor. My brother. And the list will only continue to grow.
There are times when I look at that list, and I want to cry out with Martha, "Lord, you could have done something! You could have stopped this!"
What I love about Jesus is that in Martha's deepest moment of doubt and despair, He reveals Himself most fully to her. When she gives voice to her most honest thought, Jesus shows His most honest self. "I am the resurrection and the life." He doesn't reject her for her doubt. He doesn't dismiss her for her honesty. Instead, He embraces her as she is, and loves her all the more.
So, as we remember our departed today, we can be honest with God. We can wish they weren't dead. We can wish that God would have healed the cancer, stopped the heart attack, prevented the car crash. We can bring to God our doubts, our heartaches, our most honest prayers.
But we also remember that God is transforming us into saints; transforming us into immortal beings capable of gazing into the face of the living God, and experiencing His immeasurable love.
Today I remember:
- Saint David Parrott
- Saint George Henkler
- Saint Phyllis Gates
- Saint Donald Gates
- Saint Dan Cloud