Several months ago, possibly even more than a year ago, I came across this writing about the difference between resignation and acceptance. At the time, I knew I was resigned to the death of my son, and had no inclination toward acceptance of it. I hoped, though, I would some day move closer to that elusive state of acceptance.
I came across this writing again while browsing through my desk drawer, looking for who-knows-what. When I first read it again, I thought I was still in the same place I was months ago, and was a little disappointed in myself. But upon my second (or third) reading of it, I began to realize – my faith, which had taken a huge blow after my son died in a car accident, is healthier than I believed it was.
Isn’t God amazing? I love how He is really and truly true to His word. He really never leaves us or forsakes us. He has stood by my side through all of the anger, disappointment, and sorrow. Even when I wanted nothing to do with Him (which was never really true, but felt like it), He stayed with me, encouraging me to keep on keeping on, and loving me, just like He always has.
Here is the excerpt I read many months ago, and again recently:
“Resignation is surrender to fate.
Acceptance is surrender to God.
Resignation lies down quietly in an empty universe.
Acceptance rises up to meet the God who fills the universe with purpose and destiny.
Resignation says, ‘I can’t.’
Acceptance says, ‘God can.’
Resignation paralyzes the life process.
Acceptance releases the process for its greatest creativity.
Resignation says, ‘It’s all over for me.’
Acceptance asks, ‘Now that I am here, what’s next, Lord?’
Resignation says, ‘What a waste.’
Acceptance says, ‘In what redemptive way will you use this mess, Lord?’
Resignation says, ‘I am alone.’
Acceptance says, ‘I belong to you, O God.'”
By Creath Davis, Lord If I Ever Needed You It’s Now
As I consider the journey I’ve been on the past 3 years, grieving the loss of my middle child, in light of this piece, I have a difficult time distinguishing resignation from acceptance if I don’t look at it in light of the living God. In fact, I don’t know how there could be acceptance at all without the light of the living God. He comforts in the most painful circumstances and brings His perfect light into the darkest places. He is my hope of glory. He is the reason I can accept anything.
“I lift up my eyes to the mountains; From where shall my help come? My help comes from the Lord, Who made heaven and earth. He will not allow your foot to slip; He who keeps you will not slumber. Behold, He who keeps Israel will neither slumber nor sleep. The Lord is your keeper; The Lord is your shade on your right hand. The sun will not smite you by day, nor the moon by night. The Lord will protect you from all evil; He will keep your soul. The Lord will guard your going out and your coming in from this time forth and forever.” Psalm 121