Post Accident: Day 6 dawns and my thoughts turn to TWO-FACED PERSPECTIVE
Claude and I have two young nieces, Darby (six) and Eden (four). Since they live far away, in Maine, we Facetime…a lot. The day after the accident, Darby and Eden wanted to “see” Uncle Claude. My sister prepared them ahead of time, talking about the accident and showing them a picture I had sent. Children are honest, and Darby and Eden’s honest responses to “seeing” Uncle Claude have brought us the good medicine of laughter. I went to bed last night pondering one of the comments Darby made to our daughter, Sydney, when the girls and Sydney Facetimed later that same day.
“Sydney, one side of Uncle Claude’s face looks like happy Uncle Claude. The other side of Uncle Claude’s face looks like sad Uncle Claude.”
Darby’s comment is a delightful way to describe the affects of the crash on Claude’s face! But what do Darby’s comment, Claude’s two-faces, have to do with PERSPECTIVE? Journey back with me for a minute, back to Thursday morning in Claude’s ER room…
The hospital staff had just wheeled Claude out of the room to do a series of scans from the pelvis up, checking for internal injuries and broken bones. I slid down the wall, squatting with my head in my hands, trying to think, to process this surreal turn of events. Our dear friend, the same one who had been cycling next to Claude when the car hit him, broke into my fractured thoughts with a question:
“Do you really believe everything happens for a reason?” …a question easy to answer when the sun shines and good health abounds. But what about when dark clouds roll in and bodies lay broken in the street?
“I believe that everything that happens to me is filtered through the hands of a loving God, a God who is incapable of anything but His very best toward us. Because of this, I try not to ask ‘Why me, God?’ but ‘What, God? What is it You want to show me, teach me, in this? What is the gem You want to mine from this dark cave?’”
Time has not allowed me to really sit and process and grieve. Sometimes, when I feel the emotions creeping up, I position myself where I can only see the right side of Claude’s face, just his face. For a moment, I can go back to 4:05 AM on Thursday when Claude got out of bed to ride while I stayed in bed, hoping to catch a few more minutes of sleep before starting my assigned training workout. Among other things, Claude’s body is whole, we’re still training partners for Ironman Florida together, and one of us being hit by a car while cycling is merely a fear and not a reality.
So, this is what I’ve been thinking: the two faces of Claude are like two different PERSPECTIVES, two different belief sets about God, and the one I choose will be my life-filter.
Is God like the left side of Claude’s face that had an intimate encounter with the asphalt – unfamiliar, unwelcome, unsmiling, distorted, and honestly, a painful presence, associated with unpleasant and unwanted things?
Is God like the right side of Claude’s face that made it through the accident unscathed – familiar, gentle, kind, smiling, and a welcome presence, associated with the greatest blessings and joys of my life?
I have been saying it for the past fifteen years, and it has been my rock-solid foundation, not only when the sun is shining, but when the dark clouds have found me:
GOD IS INCAPABLE OF ANYTHING BUT HIS VERY BEST TOWARD ME – a loving God who cannot help Himself but give and do what is good and loving, because it’s His very nature and character to do what is good and loving. And I believe that for you.