I have drawn much closer to God than I would have done otherwise.
Since the very beginning of this grief filled "journey" I have had the 23rd/22nd (no matter which numbering system [masoretic or LXX] I use, someone will yell at me about it) in the forefront of my thoughts.
"Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, Thou art with me. Thy rod and Thy staff they comfort me..."
and I do know the nearness and the comfort of God. In fact, it is God's presence that keeps me going each day, and keeps me from falling into utter despair.
I know that I will be OK, whatever comes, because God is with me. God is the one holding me and taking care of me.
And each day that Wes lives longer than expected, God be glorified. And with each element of struggle and suffering, God be glorified.
I sure did not imagine having a life of chronic illness, a husband with terminal illness, kids with autism and chronic pain...never in my wildest dreams would I have chosen this for myself or my loved ones.
But would I trade it in for temporal comfort, and miss out on the sweet comfort of the Holy Spirit?
I would not.
3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, 4 who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. 5 For as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also abounds through Christ. 6 Now if we are afflicted, it is for your consolation and salvation, which is effective for enduring the same sufferings which we also suffer. Or if we are comforted, it is for your consolation and salvation. 7 And our hope for you is steadfast, because we know that as you are partakers of the sufferings, so also you will partake of the consolation.--2 Corinthians, 1st chapter.
So here's to all the young folks who don't know it yet: Your life will be so much harder than you imagine. More grief, more pain, more suffering. But God is there, with you.