Did you ever wonder why you aren’t God’s favorite child? Have you ever questioned, looking at others and then yourself, whether God loves you as much as them? I’m just being honest here. When your life doesn’t turn out the way you want — when you get the divorce and your friend gets the changed husband, when you lose your baby and others get a medical miracle, when you live hand-to-mouth and others have money to go to Europe or buy a new car.
Of course, the flipside of this is to realize that you have a roof over your head, when some are living in cardboard boxes. You have food to eat, while a large portion of the world’s population doesn’t. You have people in your life who love you, while there are lonely people without any support.
The truth is — God doesn’t favor one child over another.
Even when it sometimes feels like it! Accepting the fact that God is in control, knows your situation, and has not moved mountains or waved a magic want to change your circumstances is a tough place to get to — especially if you are in the midst of struggle. Some of life’s greatest lessons come when we face the toughest battles and come through them, scars and all. Some of our greatest blessings, too . . .
Our first child was stillborn. At the time, I couldn’t imagine a greater pain as a mother — until 32 years later, when I watched my son and his wife hold their lifeless little girl. Sara Ann had been born five days before her due date, perfect in every way except for the umbilical cord wrapped tightly around her neck. The gut-wrenching agony of watching your child suffer and not being able to do anything about it is every parent’s nightmare. Maybe you’ve been there. In those moments of not understanding why? we have to reach to the depths of our faith. Sometimes it means clinging to it by the tips of our fingernails, holding onto the edge of the cliff, praying for God to intervene. Let’s not kid ourselves; some pain never truly fades completely away. Loss, betrayal, evil, injustice. We can’t, with our finite minds, make sense of some things in this world.
But this is a two-sided coin — because while we struggle to understand the consequences of sin entering the world and of the depravity of man, we also can’t truly wrap our minds around a God who loves and cares for us. And here is where the blessing steps in: God can take the worst of circumstances and bring good from them.
The hole in my heart from the loss of our son Joel has never been filled or replaced. While comforted by the knowledge of where they are, I will long for my son and granddaughter to the end of my days. And yet . . .
And yet here is the blessing that the Lord has given me through all of this — a deep, abiding joy and gratitude for my other children and grandchildren. It is not that I love them more, or would have loved them less — but I have a knowledge and appreciation of what true gifts their lives are to me. It is not that I appreciate or love my children more than other parents, but that I carry within me an awareness of how precious every child is and am grateful with a gratitude that, frankly, I cannot say would be mine if I hadn’t experienced loss.
Every situation is different; everyone’s circumstances, challenges, pain, and suffering vary. But God does not change. But God so loved . . . (John 3:16) His love is as vast and as deep for us as it was the day He sacrificed His Own Son for us. Yes, He loves Jesus and His other children. But He loves me just as much.
In fact, I might be His favorite child after all.