Wednesday, July 14, 2004

The power of prayer?
I've always had trouble with prayer. I ask all the questions - why? what? where? when? how? I'm not sure I know how to answer any of them with certainty. The Christian blog world is reeling at the news that a prominent blogger's son has leukemia. I've never met or even corresponded with Rudy Carrasco, who blogs at Urban Onramps, but he seems like a man of great faith. It makes me incredibly sad to think of how much pain he and his wife are feeling right now. I get worried when my five month-old daughter doesn't have regular bowel movements - I don't want to imagine how much worse this must be.

He's obviously praying. I've been praying for his son. But what do I pray for? For healing? That would be great, but if God will heal people if we just ask the right way, why does God let them get sick in the first place? That seems to me to be a pretty capricious God we have. I think of palmer's Journal. Palmer's wife died after a short battle with cancer. He wrote how they prayed daily for a miraculous recovery. Needless to say, it didn't happen. Now he's a single father (supported by a great community) raising their 2 year-old son.

I think the problem for me right now is that I'm angry. I don't understand God. I don't understand why good people get sick and some get better and some don't. I don't understand why we think praying makes a bit of difference. Are we asking for the wrong things? Should we be asking for anything at all? It's not enough to say to me that we "can't understand God's plan." No shit. God's plan doesn't seem to make any sense a lot of the time. Is there even a plan?

I had a very good friend in college. Karen was a fantastic human being: smart, funny, kind, generous, and compassionate. She brought out the best in everyone and made you want to be a better person. Then one day during our junior year she found a lump under her arm. During the summer she had it removed. The doctor, thinking it was benign, put in a shunt to drain the wound. The doctor, being completely f$&%*ing wrong, created a pathway for a rare, very deadly cancer to spread to the rest of her body. Karen died in 2001, after three years of fighting. If that was in God's plan, I don't want any part of it.

I'm angry because I don't have answers. I'm angry because I feel guilty that I'm still here when better people than me have died. I'm angry because it seems like all God has to offer right now is a shoulder to cry on. ("Life sucks. I hope you feel better soon." - God) I'm angry that I'm feeling grief for someone I don't know and will probably never meet. I'm angry that I feel totally powerless. I'm angry because I'm scared. I'm scared because I have a child that depends on me, and I can't protect her from the worst the world has to offer. I'm scared because I hoped God would protect us, but part of me wonders now.

God help us. Please.

Information about the Karen Wyckoff Sarcoma Research Fund



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