There is always a tension when I go to Alamosa. It is the battle between trying to be as normal as possible while knowing that this is the farthest from normal I have ever been. There are times when I look at my dad and I still cannot believe this is happening. How is it that 13 months have come and gone and he is still there and we are still here?
Many times my mom and I have discussed how much we wrestle with all of this. It is a fine line between hating the sin that caused this and being disappointed in a God that allowed it to happen.
Sometimes that line becomes very blurred. Often, actually.
The other day, while I sat there blubbering and all of my mascara ran off of my chin, I shared with a group of people how I feel like my family is similar to Noah's (the ark guy, not my nephew). We had been studying him and I was particularly struck by the ark's door. With His hand, God closed the door of the ark, with Noah and his family tucked inside, while the most destructive, cataclysmic event to ever hit the earth raged on around them.
God was protecting them. He had set them apart for this very challenge.
Yet, I wonder if Noah thought God had left them. I wonder if in the midst of rain and thunder and death, if Noah ever thought that he and his family would be stuck in that boat forever. I wonder if he thought God's protection and favor felt more like a curse.
And when they did hit dry ground, when the raven left and the dove never returned, when Noah thought the worst may be over, that door that God had so carefully shut, still remained closed.
I wonder if he cried out, "How much longer, God? This place stinks! When will you open that door to your newness, to your goodness, to a time of hope? When will we see the sun and feel its heat?"
How long, indeed. Did you know they were in the ark for over a year? In my mind I had only thought 40 days and 40 nights. But that was just the rain. It took 11 more months for everything to dry out and for God to prepare a place for them to live again.
And then it hit me: He had been working all along. Even though the door was closed and they couldn't see out, He was still working. And He had them in mind all along.
So that is where I am, I am waiting on God to fling open that door and let the sun warm us again. I am waiting to see what He has been working on all this time. And I am trusting that He has had my dad, my family, in mind all along.
In the meantime, I will try to not kick down the door.
I will just eat doughnuts in the dark.