My son came home from school excitedly chatting about a get together later that day with friends. Unaware of that plan, I told my son there were other priorities today. "But Mom! This is so important! We want to finish this cool thing we've been working on and I want to go so badly! You just HAVE to take me! I just HAVE to go today!"
Seeing our priorities collide through the lack of planning (and oversight of a teenage boy) I told him I needed to think about it and see if it could work. "Mom, I just haaaaaaaave to go today. Pleeeeeeeeeeeeez?" I sat on the couch with my daytimer moving things around like a rubics cube. If I move this here then we could do that errand on the way to . . . "Ok son. I can make it work." His face lit up and I honestly think his huge body skipped a few steps before he turned and said, "Thank you Mom! I love you."
"Would you love me if I said no?" I called out as he rounded the corner.
From a couple steps down the stairway I could hear his feet land solidly and stop at my question. After a short silence he called back humbly, "Mom - I would love you even if you said no. But maybe I just wouldn't say it outloud."
Hmmm. With news this week that my husband's cancer has advanced farther than what medical tools can stop, and the encouragement of the doctors to now put things in order with the time we have left, I feel like God has told us "no" to some pretty big requests. We, alongside our church family, our friends, siblings, and parents, have begged and pleaded . . . and the answer is "no".
There are times when my answer to my children is "no". My children do not always understand why I give that answer. They do not see all of the variables I see. And I understand that every "no" brings frustration and sadness into their lives.
I'm sure on an elevated level God is the same way. To our begging sometimes He must say no. God, I know you are listening for my response . . . and I am saying this outloud today - "I love you even with the 'no'."