I have lots of New Agey-type friends. I used to lean that way myself. People who swear we are gods in our own right and that tapping into that power, or connecting to 'All That Is' is as easy as turning on a light switch. People who tell me that just envisioning the outcome I want will bring it into being. Know what I've never found? I've never ever found someone who has been to Hell and back who believes those things. The people I've met in life who have experienced the worst of humanity (like the Holocaust survivor I know, or the young friend who watched her entire family murdered in front of her in Rwanda, or the 13 year old girl I teach who was raped, tortured and beaten by her father for years, and who, when she finally got the courage to tell, was forced by this father to eat her own dog) - these people, these miraculous beings who looked Evil in the face and lived to tell about it -- these people, whether Jew or Christian or Muslim or something all their own, accept and understand their own limitations and reach upwards to a God who promises to love them and be with them, even when they feel it not. Each of these people I mentioned found that we do not have any real power of our own accord. Nothing, apart from Him. If we did, those horrible things would not have happened, because we would never allow them in our lives.
I have not survived a holocaust. I cannot fathom what it would be like to see my family murdered before me, but in my own relative circumstances, I have been living my own little version of hell. And I am here to tell you that platitudes and positive thinking cannot clear a heart of darkness. A little darkness? Sure. But a great big, unfathomably deep and all penetrating darkness that seems to pummel us in relentless waves? No. 'Happy thoughts' are not going to fix that kind of thing. It takes something greater than ourselves. Ask the wounded among us; they will tell you.
And so, in this never ending journey of pain and suffering with Daniel and Anya, I have only two choices. I can trust in all the other instances that God has proven His love (and there are sooo many) and wait for His answer to come or I can give up, turn my back on Daniel and Anya, and walk away.
I'm sure you know which one I choose.
I cannot even pretend to understand why Daniel and Anya have to suffer so much in this life and why I continuously am put in the position to not be able to help them. And yes, I am also fully aware that I have gotten the lion's share of bad luck in recent days. I do not know why, but I do know this: God (Love) is ever and always pushing us towards a greater good ( if we allow it). I may not see the point of the suffering, but I don't have to. My job is to persevere. My job is to put one foot in front of the other, even when I'd rather just lay down and give up. Its not easy. In fact, some days its downright impossible. But the impossible is nothing to God.
So what if it's not happening in my time frame? Who am I to question? 'Be still, and know that I Am.' Sage advice all those thousands of years ago, and still sage advice today.
I do not know when or even IF Daniel and Anya will come home to me. I do not know when or IF their suffering will end. But I know this: God loves them, and if He loves them, He will not forsake them. And that is why I have hope in the face of so much uncertainty and suffering.
So, while some around me tell me what I should be doing and thinking and feeling, I'll be banking on LOVE.
LOVE sits with Daniel when he cries himself to sleep wondering why I have abandoned him when I promised I'd come. LOVE embraces Anya when she is hungry or lonely or missing us, her family. LOVE knows them and loves them and keeps them. That is all I know, and all I need to know.