June 23


Stuff Happens

Oh my. It has been awhile since I have posted. So much for fulfilling my goal of posting three times a week. Actually, now that I have written that goal out loud, I suppose there is more pressure to keep up. But there always seems to be an excuse. First, it was getting ready for VBS (Vacation Bible School). Then it was VBS. Then it was recupping from VBS. Sigh. It is good to make plans and goals, but if I’ve learned anything in my life, it is that things don’t always go as planned.

Case in point: On Thursday, my husband and I headed to the Minnesota/Wisconsin border for a night in a B&B and a weekend in the Twin Cities to celebrate our anniversary. Before we settled in, we hiked around the state park by the St. Croix river. The trail we were on trailed off and we ventured into less traveled territory. About 6 feet from the main road, my husband stepped on a slippery rock and the next thing we knew, he was laying on the ground with his wrist bending in a way it shouldn’t bend. I’ve attached the X-ray, if you can stomach that kind of thing.  Frankly, I can’t, but it’s not nice to make this about me.

Long story short, our weekend was obviously cut short. We headed home Friday morning, were in surgery Friday night, and have spent the weekend making sure the wrist is held above the heart. My husband is doing very well (he has an amazing tolerance for pain!) and all is going to be fine in six to eight weeks, God willing.

Accidents happen and of course we were disappointed, but as is almost always said in these circumstances: “It could have been worse.” Ironically, last year it was me in the emergency room on our anniversary weekend. We rented bikes and were enjoying a ride through the woods by the lake. I got to going too fast down a hill (in my defense, we don’t have hills in Fargo-Moorhead), and being unfamiliar with both hills and bikes that actually work like they should, I braked too hard and went over the handle bars. Nothing broken but many bruises, lots of swelling, and I gimped around for a while.

We are beginning to question our anniversary celebrations. We had planned on canoeing, but perhaps that is a bad idea. Accidents in canoes usually result in something more serious (like death) and we aren’t sure we want to take that kind of risk. 

If you believe in God, and I do, you start to wonder when things like this happen. Did God do this on purpose? Did he allow my husband to break his wrist so that we wouldn’t get in the canoes where something worse might have happened? Does he just want to spoil our fun so we don’t get too cocky? 

I don’t give any of those thoughts any credence. Stuff happens. It’s just life. I don’t believe there are any hidden spiritual messages here. Then again, would I still be saying this if the results of our accidents had been seriously life-changing?  Am I able to shrug this off only because it wasn’t more serious? We live in a fallen world and bad stuff happens. Is there a line between “accident” and blaming God?

Personally I don’t think God causes the bad things that happen to us. I read somewhere that God loves us too much to much to make bad things happen. Yet, he does allow bad things to happen. The question of how God can allow this is one of the biggest stumbling blocks to faith.  Again, our mishaps were nothing in the big scheme of things, but others can’t say that. Us humans like to think we have control of our lives but are reminded often that things can change in an instant.

Being Human connection: How do we reconcile a good God with bad events? What are your thoughts?