“God, I feel like You jipped me,” I prayed, tears welling up in my eyes so far I couldn’t see straight anymore.
My gut hurt in a huge way.
I took a shuddering breath. Again. Then, “God, I believe in You. I do. Just help my unbelief.”
One of my friends went on to Heaven this week.
Because I had not known her long, some people wonder at my tears and grief. I actually felt I may need to apologize for it, to keep it to myself at first.
But the truth is that in the short time I knew Natalie, she made a huge impact on my life. And my heart is so broken feeling, so sad.
A recent email exchange between the two of us had us both saying it was a total God thing that our paths had crossed and how cool is God?
That God moment was easy to believe in.
Mere weeks later she suffered a huge heart attack – while in the hospital because they knew she was having heart issues – which caused brain damage. Her life here suddenly ended, but her life suddenly gave life to so many due to her organs…as she was gifted with a donated heart years ago.
As a group of us gathered on Wednesday morning to cry, to remember, I went along even though a dark voice told me I didn’t belong, not knowing her as these women did.
I am so glad I went. I’ll treasure that morning for a long time.
As I listened to story after story of the remarkable woman she was, the woman I had just gotten to know, the woman whose words I had sat under as she taught her Bible study, the woman who for whatever reason I immediately connected with in a way unlike my soul usually does, I again felt that cry I had uttered to God…
“God, You jipped me.”
But do I believe God, or do I not?
I don’t understand it. Not even a little. I would rather watch to see how God works this out then doubt Him. I may never see how it worked out to His glory here, but I’ll trust anyhow.
How did Natalie live a life that impacted so many? She lived out her love for God. She lived authentically.
As someone who knew her well, “She was a modern living breathing Bible person in real life.” Like the ones we read about in the Bible.
I keep reminding myself to Give Thanks in All Things. Not for all things, but IN all things. I am thanking God I was fortunate to have met Natalie. I am fortunate to be around women who knew her so well.
When I think of how she is singing with a strong heart in heaven now, I can’t help but feel more Joy for her and less sorrow for us.