I sat outside this afternoon at the picnic table at work soaking up the sun (yes it does shine once in awhile here in Oregon). The view was tremendous. My office is on a hillside overlooking the south part of town, it is almost a park like setting. The industrial area below was humming with work, and you could hear the traffic moving along I-5, yet the birds chirping seemed to be a much stronger sound, well at least more peaceful and beautiful. The valley gives way to rolling hills which leads into the mountains, really quite breath taking.
As I sat there taking it all in I was overwhelmed by the vastness. Quite different than the view from my desk which is really limited. I began to wonder what God's view was at that time (and yes for a brief minute, Ryan's view from Heaven, how spectacular it must be).
I began to think about the little details. I am confident that in one of the houses, way across where I could barely see, was someone. However, my view being limited I couldn't tell if there was someone, let alone what color their hair was, or eyes, or were they wearing flip flops? Probably not at least not blinged out ones like those of us who are "cool" do. Okay squirrel....(for those of you who are wondering what in the world that means, watch the movie UP). Focus...okay back to the view and thought.
How in the world can God up in Heaven, look down at the vastness and yet care about each and everyone of us individually? He not only knows what color my hair is, He has a plan and purpose that is specific just for me. While I don't doubt this at all, I just don't understand how that is possible. He is not surprised by anything that happens and He promises to work all things for good. Our lives are indeed like the tapestry. Lots of threads all woven together.
While I prefer bright cheery colors and could live with out the black and dark brown colors, I realize the blacks and the browns or dark colors if you will, are what give the tapestry definition. Just like the dark times in our lives, they add definition and dimension to make up the final picture. While I know this is true, I still would prefer to live without the dark. Perhaps I have already had enough of the dark colors and now its time for the brightness to paint my life.
It's been a little over 5 years since Ryan was KIA. I am reminded of it again as the anniversary of some of his best buddies approaches tomorrow. I couldn't help but ask why they were taken. Ryan's purpose was to protect them, if they were going to be taken as well, then why did he have to die also? These questions still remain unanswered, although the more I learn the more I wonder if he could have handled it. He took the other losses so personal. He told me his job and mission was to protect the others. He had felt like he failed. So when he was killed I accepted it, knowing he was saving the others (okay so accepted may not be the best word, but it did help knowing that he was doing what he was "called" to do). All that to say that the darkest days have also shaped who I am. I definitely have a different perspective on life and it's brevity. In fact 6 years ago, I probably wouldn't have taken the time to sit out on the picnic bench.
We don't always know what God's plan for us is but we can stand on His promises knowing that He loves us, never gives us more than we can handle and will work all things for good. Just like the sunshine that beat down on my face today, God has blessed me immensely with a new phase of bright colors and sunshine with the perfect man for me.
You're the Best, Shawna