“And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God,
to those who are called according to His purpose.” Romans 8:28
Over the last 12 months I have spent much frustration questioning God as to why He didn’t protect David. If He promises to work everything together for the good of those who love Him and are called according to His purpose, why isn’t David here today? How was death at the hand of a suicide bomber in Afghanistan, the prosperity promised in this scripture? Here is what I have concluded as I enter the new life God has given me.
Many of you have heard me quote Isaiah 6:8, “and the Lord said, whom shall I send? And I said, ‘here I am Lord. Send me.’” In the aftermath of his death, that verse came to me in a multitude of ways, including David’s own hand in a letter I received on the day of his funeral. It is on David’s headstone at Arlington National Cemetery. It brought me great peace in knowing that David died doing what he felt he had been called to. But it wasn’t until this morning, after a long day of ruck marching with his men to honor his sacrifice, that I finally understood the even greater significance.
David was called according to His purpose, not his purpose. God’s purpose…not David’s. God’s purpose is always to bring glory to His name. To triumph. To have victory over death. The suicide bombers might has surprised the men on the ground. But not the sovereign, omnipresent creator of life. My husband was in the middle of God’s will when he walked into Heaven wearing boots in the sand.
I begged God to protect him from the dangers of this world. Now, he has never been safer. Nothing of this fallen world can ever come near him again. God worked everything together for the good of one who was called according to His purpose.
“For we know that if the earthly tent we live in is destroyed, we have a building from God, an eternal house in heaven, not built by human hands. Meanwhile we groan, longing to be clothed instead with our heavenly dwelling…Therefore we are always confident and know that as long as we are at home in the body we are away from the Lord. For we live by faith, not by sight. We are confident, I say, and would prefer to be away from the body and at home with the Lord.” 2 Corinthians 5:1-2, 6-8
So how do those of us that are still in our earthly tents carry on when the ground beneath us trembles? You start by putting one foot in front of the other. Before you know it, you look back and realize just how far you’ve come. Someone once said, “you never know how strong you are until you have no choice but to be strong.” I would say, you never know how strong He is until you have no strength of your own. You can’t experience the fullness of faith until something shakes it. And you can’t realize your purpose until you realize His purpose.
The calendar doesn’t start in January for me anymore. On August 8, 2012 my previous life ended. But I survived the most difficult year of my life. So today, August 9th, is New Year’s Day for me. I will always carry David in my heart. Our children carry his blood in their veins. But now it is time to follow in his footsteps and lead the life to which we are called. The one according to His purpose. Even if it looks far different than the one we imagined.
Life will be different. But it will be good.