I don’t know.

Drew is 27. He has been married for a couple years. He’s at the hospital. He’s elated. His wife just had a baby. Their first. He walks out. He drives away. A truck hits his car.

He’s dead.

His dad’s a pastor. He’s a great kid.  His wife’s a great kid. He’s a golf course manager. He’s in Florida because he did a great job for the same owner in Fort Wayne.

He’s dead.

I don’t know why.

Any answer about lives that will be touched, almost any answer at all, still leaves Drew dead and his child fatherless and his wife a widow and his dad and mom hollow.

I talked to a lady in my office the other day. She is having surgery next week. She is scared, a little. She has kids who aren’t old.  I talked to her about what Jesus had said about the Father’s love. As I talked to her, I acknowledged that what I was saying was easy for me to say, given that I’m not having surgery next week. I told her that I was just repeating what Jesus had said about his Father.

Why her?

I don’t know why.

But here’s what I know.

  • I know that God the Father knows exactly what it is like to lose a good child in the prime of life.
  • I know that standing next to a child’s grave I knew God’s presence.
  • I know that when John (the baptizing one) was facing death, he wanted to be sure that Jesus was Jesus.
  • I know that Jesus didn’t scold him, didn’t punish him, didn’t say “jinx”.
  • I know that a pediatric neurosurgeon said that having faith doesn’t keep you from asking questions but it helps you not have to push so hard for answers.

You know?

9 thoughts on “I don’t know.

  1. Belinda

    It’s times like those that we need to remember God’s promises. Especially the ones where He promised to never leave us and that He will come back one day to take us home, where he will dry off our tears. It doesn’t take away the hurt immediately but it carries us through when it feels like we can’t go on anymore.


  2. Zane Safrit

    Connie Reece was right. This is a great post.

    Violating my near-sacred rule, I’m commenting about religion.

    * God never lost his Son. We lost God’s Son.

    * Faith should be strong enough to inspire you to keep pushing for solutions, answers, cures.

    There are answers. Push to find them. Don’t stop till you do. That process is science. The will to keep pushing is faith.

    The truly faithful will honor that by helping you find them, not complaining you’re pushing ’em too hard for answers.


    1. Jon Swanson

      Thanks for stopping by, Zane.
      I’m reminded of a man who said, in time of desperation, “Lord, I believe. Help my unbelief.”
      When I look at You, he said, I believe. When I look at my son, I don’t so much.
      I understand that man.
      Faith and fear. Side by side.
      Talking to the answer.


  3. Connie Reece

    As usual, Jon, you break my heart with your words. 300 of them, written at a 3rd-grade reading level (I checked). And they crack my composure, expose hidden doubts and struggles, fear and faith. What a gift you share with us. I’m so glad to call you “friend.”


  4. Pingback: Some thoughts on talking with God. | 300 words a day

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