Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Is He good?

Tirzah came with me yesterday. She didn't come in...but she came to the hospice center. She knew where we were and she knew what happens there.

I told her about my friend. I told her how old she was. My daughter is 11. So at we all thought at 11...she said "oh, I didn't know she was that old" but then I told her that 41 is only 4 years older than Daddy. That changed everything.

She knew how many kids she has. And how old they are. She listened as I told her how sad this was.

My friend is dying of cancer.  Honestly...I should have expected what I saw...but I didn't.

My poor friend who was with me. She all but had to close my mouth for me as I stood in total shock.  I could see no resemblance of the beautiful lady I had seen not that long ago.  She looked thin. Frail. And really old.  It was heartbreaking.

Her breathing was so spaced that there were a few times my friend and I thought she had just breathed her last.  Awful. We stood there in total silence.  In awe of what cancer can do to a young, healthy, vibrant woman.


On our way home, Tirzah and I were silent.  There wasn't much to say.  I couldn't really talk. Tirzah knew I had just seen my friend and she said several times "I'm sorry, Mommy".

I looked at her and said " He good...?'

There was no gap.  In fact, she whipped her head around from looking out the window and said, without hesitation..."Always Good, Mommy"

Me: "Always....?"

Tirzah: "Always.  He can't be anything else."

Me: "But she's dying. She's laying there dying."

Tirzah: "I know Mommy...but He's good."

Me: (taking this as far as I could to stretch her as much as I could) "If it was you in that bed...would He still be good....?"

Tirzah: "Oh Mommy...yes. He would still be good"

Me: "If it was me...?"

Tirzah: "Yes!"

Me: "But why would He..."

Tirzah: (she cut me off) "You know He doesn't make Cancer, right...? He doesn't give bad things"

Me: "Could he stop it though...?"

Tirzah: "Oh He could have stopped it long before it started!!"

Me: "but...He didn't"

Tirzah: "I know.  He didn't"

Me: "and if it were you in that bed..or me...or my friend. Why. Why didn't He stop it? Is there purpose in everything?"

Tirzah (At this point we had just pulled into her driveway and I'll never forget this moment...) She put her hand on the handle of the door...she looked over at me boldly and said " I don't know what His plan is...but I do know He's always good. He can't be anything else. And sometimes He says YES when we pray sometimes He doesn't. I don't understand it all but I know He's always good Mommy" and she hopped out of the van, smiled over her shoulder and skipped into the house.

Yes I was pushing her.  I was trying to see what she really believed.

I sat in the van for 5-10 more minutes. Still so sad for my friend's family. But struck with the raw faith of an 11 year old girl.  Who had just entered into the horror of that being her or her mommy in that hospital bed.


Understand it...? No.

Waver in His goodness...? Not a chance.

He is always good. 


  1. The faith of your family astounds me. What you have instilled into your children. I mean I sit here and tear up at just about every one of your posts Janice. I wish I had words to take away your friends pain, for her and her family. I have walked down that road too many times with cancer. But yes. He is Good. Always. We might get a little sidetracked looking through foggy eyes..but always. Good.

    Peace and rest to you in the upcoming days. And that joy always comes at whatever time you need it most.

    <3 Dena

  2. Dena~thank you for following our journey through life. So hard watching people go through such hard things. If only we could have that unshakeable knowledge...that He is always good. Life...? not necessarily. But Him...? Always. <3

  3. Dear Janice, I am so sorry you have a friend that is suffering through cancer! My family experienced cancer several times... first when my beloved nana (my mom's mother) died of cancer at age 51 when I was 9 years old. Several years later, my then stepfather' s sister was diagnosed with breast cancer. And in March of 2011, my mom ended up in the emergency room on a weekend for what my sister and I thought was pneumonia or bronchitis only for them to find a spot on her lung in addition to the infection. She ended up having surgery to remove a lobe of her left lung and thankfully, has since been in remission!
    I pray your friend is comforted and kept free from pain and I also have to say you've obviously done a wonderful job teaching your children about Jesus! Tirzah is beautiful and sound like a remarkable young lady!
    Have you heard of Kara Tippetts? She is a Christian lady, a wife and mom with cancer. Her blog is also inspiring as is her book! The blog is called Mundane Faithfulness and the book is "The Hardest Peace." I think you'd find it interesting and inspiring!
    Hugs and prayers, Lori

  4. Lori~you my friend, have been through some hard things. I have not heard of those books but I can tell they would be deeply moving to read, I will make sure I do that!! Thank you for sharing .

  5. Yes, I have but then again, we all have our hard times and I know many have had it worse than I. I am just glad to be alive because there were times (especially between the years 1998 and 2002) when I didn't want to be because of the emotional despair I felt and also, feeling at the time that I had no purpose. Now, I feel part of my purpose is to bear witness to the love of God, the importance of salvation and also to be present in another's pain if and when I am needed. Just so you know? You have done that for me and probably many others via this blog and I thank you for that!