07 October 2009

Brians Thoughts: Why?

Breck and I have had similar thoughts as we have begun to deal with our son's diagnosis.  We have decided to write about it separately.  This is Brian's post:

"God, why did this happen to me?"

That is the question I want to ask. That is the question, when I contemplate the years of treatments, medication and hospital visits that Bennett's life will entail, that burns a hole in my heart. I don't want my son's life to be full of suffering. I do not want to outlive my own child.

But as soon as I begin to ask that question, I feel a different burning. In my soul. Because I know, embedded in that question, is an implicit assumption. Behind that question is an accusation. God, I *deserve* to have a child. And I *deserve* to have one free from illness and calamity. To ask that question is to assert my own rights to the One who gives me the breath to protest against Him. And I know that deep down, I deserve nothing.

What do you have that you have not received? And if you received it, why do you boast as if it were not a gift? (1 Corinthians 4:7)

Bennett is a gift from God. He is not merely a vehicle for Cystic Fibrosis; he is a child who happens to be afflicted by CF. *All* of Bennett is gracious gift. He does not 'belong' to us; he 'belongs' to the Lord, who has given him to us that we might be his stewards. Breck nurtured him in the womb and I nurtured Breck but God is the one who gave life.

I do not write these things because I am free from anxiety and sorrow; I write them because I am plunged in darkness and sadness. And whatever else may befall us, Breck and I know that *this* is the truth. *This* is the final word on Bennett's life. He is blessing, even when cursed. We know this because we have been fed this truth by the community of faith for so long, because others have believed with and for us before we ever arrived at this point in our lives.

I will continue to ask why. Yet, in the midst of the asking, we will choose to thank God for His gracious gift, for the privilege to care for our little blessed one.


  1. Yes, he IS a gift as all children are! But Bennett is extra special and will require extra love, care and attention. You are perfect parents for the job!

  2. Brian,

    Your post brought me to tears this morning. What faith you have! I'm constantly amazed and impressed at the strength you and Breck have.

    My mom has always told me that God doesn't give us anything that we can't handle. While it might be difficult to understand right now, know that God has chosen you for this task for a reason. While that reason might not be clear right now, I'm certain that this challenge will make you and Breck stronger and give you another opportunity to share your faith with others.

    We continue to pray for you daily. Much love from Nashville!


  3. Just another thought...I was reminded of one of my favorite verses. I'm sure you know it, but here's Joshua 1:9:

    "Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go."

  4. Brian,

    I can't even begin to imagine how difficult all of this is for you. I've dealt with my share of suffering and pain (my father, who was only 44, died a slow, painful death from colon cancer 2 years ago), but what you are going through is off the chart as far as I am concerned.

    Your response is one of the most mature expressions of faith I have ever seen. I know I could not do it. And you are exactly right. We don't *deserve* anything, yet we act as though we do. It is easy to sit as a detached observer and rationalize how we must accept both good and bad from God, how God works all things together for good in the end, how suffering is a necessary part of the world because of sin, etc. But all of that goes out the window when it happens to much more so when it happens to your child? This is where I know that I utterly fail to come up with an explanation or any response that even begins to make sense of it all.

    Brian, I can't say anything that amounts to any worth at all. So let me just say that your response, while I'm sure it doesn't even begin to express the emotions and the thoughts that are inside you right now, inspires me and greatly humbles me.

    You and your family are in my thoughts and my prayers.

    David Melvin

  5. Brian,
    Thank you for sharing your thoughts on such a difficult question that we all often ask, even if we don't want to admit it. I think you're right - Bennett is an incredible gift that God has given to you guys as parents, and to all of us that are blessed to be your friends. I love the meaning of Bennett's name - he is one big blessing to us all and I know he will be blessed by God, even with his diagnosis of CF.


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