Any parent of a three year old has heard the question, "Why?" dozens of times.
In our family right now, though, Justin, our six year old, is the one asking why. And his "why" is a reflection of the question in my own heart. "Why did God have to take Daddy?"
I have decided that there is no answer to that question that would satisfy me. There are suggested answers- possibilities- but none of those are good enough. I have a rebuttal to each one.
"So that he won't have to be in pain." As glad as I am that Bryan isn't feeling pain, anyone who knows him knows that pain never made him wish his life away.
"So that he didn't have to go through cancer treatment." Bryan would have gone through any amount of chemo, and had already started that process, in order to stay with his family.
"So that people would be touched by his faith." People were touched by his faith when he was alive.
"Because the Lord has great plans for the family going forward." I liked the plans that I thought He had before just fine.
The basic problem with "answers" is this: While I don't doubt that there will be good things that happen for our family, I'll never be convinced that having Bryan here would have led to bad things. Because of that, no amount of "answers" will ever persuade me that Bryan's death was a good thing.
The other day when I was driving home from the cemetery, it occurred to me that Bryan never felt like he understood why his mom died. They were very close, and she died before we married and had children. We talked about it on several occasions and he never had an answer to why. But he did continue to live life, and the answer wasn't necessary.
Job said of the Lord, "If He takes away, who can hinder Him? Who can say to Him, 'What are You doing?'" (Job 9:12) The fact is that the Lord's thoughts are far above our human thoughts and His plans extend through eternity. Our human minds can't fully grasp even the smallest portion of His purpose.
So sometimes the best answer to "Why?" is "Just because."