My friends are burying their 33 year old son today. Dear God, no…why have you abandoned us?
As I sit in the early hours of this morning, I remember a day 38 years ago when my husband and I were waking up on the day we were to bury his 39 year old sister. And we were thinking My God, my God why have you abandoned us?
Waiting for dawn to break today, I remember that morning 38 years ago, dreading the hour of sunrise, because that meant the day was beginning, and it was time to prepare for the funeral.
As I lay in bed with my dying mother last July, I thought what is this? How is this happening? My God my God why have you abandoned us?
And then out the window in her room in hospice I caught a glimpse of the moon…a full moon no less, coming over as my grandson says, setting after its monthly gracing of the sky in full brightness…and I was reminded of the important words from Psalm 72…as long as the sun and moon endure God will live, love and endure…
And I knew that I had not been abandoned, nor had my mother, nor were we that morning when we prepared to bury Cinda, nor are my friends today as they prepare to bury their boy…
And most of all, nor was Jesus as he hung on the cross with nails in his wrists and feet and his lungs collapsing and his breath growing ever short…
No, his utterance “My God, my God why has thou forsaken me” the first line of psalm 22 is followed by words he knew by heart and recited from memory most of his life…yes. The next line continues the plea of the psalmist and of Jesus…
Why art thou so far from helping me, from the words of my groaning?
2 O my God, I cry by day, but thou dost not answer;
and by night, but find no rest.
But then the psalmist begins the acknowledgement that God will endure, will prevail, will love, will keep us safe…and Jesus knew that truth with all his soul, and it was with that understanding and comfort that he was able to let go and “breathe his last.”
And so my prayer this morning is that my friends know that God's Love will endure where they might feel they cannot, and that each of us might be reminded of that same enduring Love, which like the sun and the moon will be ever present, ever constant, ever beautiful, whether we see it or not.
“All the ends of the earth shall remember and turn to the Lord.”