I never really understand why bad things happen. I just know that they do. When I wrote to you last week about an 11-year-old girl fighting a reoccurrence of leukemia in Show some heart for Blaine, I figured that was one of those bad things that defy explanation.
I didn’t know that the day after I posted it would get worse.
No matter how many different ways I have tried to write the next sentence, I cannot find the right words. I guess I feel like if I write them, it will make them true, and I badly wish they were not.
The next sentences I write are really no easier. I am not going to say that this is all part of God’s plan or that if we all pray hard enough we can heal the broken hearts left behind. Maybe those things are true. I don’t really know.
I don’t have words to package this tragedy with the adornments of hope and faith. I think it would be unfair to Blaine and her mother to do that.
Of course, I believe her faith will get her through these dark days and I have tremendous hope that she and Blaine will in their lifetime have their hopes fulfilled. But right now, I say they cry. I say they scream. I say they throw plates at the wall.
It’s really terribly awful to lose your spouse or your parent. They were already dealing with enough bad that they didn’t deserve. They didn’t need more.
But so it is, for whatever reason, they have more.
We can theologize about their suffering, try to rationalize and analyze it. But we will never really understand the why of childhood leukemia or the why now of her dad’s untimely death.
The reality is brutal. They are suffering a tremendous loss.
When I read the Bible verses that you chose for Blaine’s fight against leukemia, I think how relevant they are now with the loss of her dad. More so, I love that we showed her the goodness of strangers when unbeknownst to all of us she would be faced with another significant hardship.
My birthday is this week.
I started this blog on my last birthday, my fortieth, because I truly felt compelled to do something that mattered. It didn’t have to matter to the world, but it needed to matter to me.
The journey brought me to Blaine’s fight with leukemia. I came to know her through prayer. She personified hope and the scriptures you shared embodied generosity. These things matter a great deal.
I know you were probably not going to buy me a birthday present, and I forgive you for that. It’s funny too because the things I want most in the world really are not things at all. Truly, just by your willingness to go on this journey with me, you have given me a priceless gift.
Still, I am going to ask you for more.
I am going to ask you to make a donation to Blaine. If you would just give $11, one dollar for every precious year that Blaine had with her dad, it would matter.
You see, the harsh reality of death is life goes on. Blaine still has to battle leukemia. Her mama still has to pay medical bills, the mortgage and all those other unrelenting expenses that dwindle away our bank accounts. She had to do all of this before, but now she has to do it without her husband.
Still, she doesn’t have to do it alone. We could help.
I realize there are tremendous needs in the world and we are often bombarded with people wanting donations for very worthwhile causes. But maybe there is a reason Blaine’s story found you. For me, I can’t help but wonder why it found me through a childhood friend who was looking for a Bible verse to encourage Blaine’s fight. I was inspired by her story. I wrote about it and asked you all to share your own message with her. The next day her dad died.
What am I supposed to do with that?
We are all going to experience tragedies in our life. This is not my tragedy. I know that. But I am in a position that I can help somebody in the midst of their suffering.
There is a quote by Margaret Mead that I have always loved and thought of many times over the past year. “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.”
I think sometimes we all feel a little bit insignificant. We don’t realize how the simplicity of kindness, decency and generosity – even from strangers — can change the world. It’s a lofty concept considering the minimal effort involved in being kind, decent and generous.
Still, I believe if you change one person’s life, you change the world. If you make someone’s life better, the world will indeed be better.
In my last post, I asked you to show some heart for Blaine by leaving a Bible verse for her. More than ever, I welcome you to leave her a special scripture or encouraging thought in the comment section of this post.
Consider, too, making a donation of just $11 to help ease some of the financial burden of their situation. Sometimes we need to pray for one another, and other times we need to be the answer to their prayers. In this case, we can be both. This time let’s not just show some heart for Blaine. Let’s show her how a small group of thoughtful people can share love and I dare to say, change the world.
If you would like to make a donation of any amount there are two options:
Please make donation checks payable to “Sun Trust Bank for the benefit of Blaine Baxley” and mail to St. John Lutheran School, 1915 SE Lake Weir Avenue, Ocala, Florida 34471-5894 or donate online at http://www.gofundme.com/Teamblaine
Also, if you are interested in offering a favorite scripture or any other encouragement for Blaine as mentioned in Show some heart for Blaine you can leave it the comment section of this post and I will make sure she gets your kind words.
For future updates or to subscribe to Mercy Me! I’ve got work to do. please sign up or like the Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/MercyMeIveGotWorkToDo. Thanking you for reading, for making my world better and for whatever way you to choose to support Blaine in her fight.