Touché August 20, 2015
Posted on August 20, 2015 by under Touché,


Lord to whom can we go? You have the words of eternal life.

I write on the second anniversary of Andrew’s accident.  It is hard to move through this day without continually thinking about how life can pivot in a moment.  Cathy is headed back to Michigan today to help him move into his college room and prepare for another year.  His academic advisor thinks, if all things work together for good, he may be able to graduate in two years, one year past his original date. All of these things are miraculous, but it is still seen through the lens of a moment that changes everything.

Two weeks ago we were in worship at Mars Hill church in Grand Rapids.  As we turned to greet the people around us, Cathy recognized a doctor whom we met at Spectrum in the ICU unit that first day, August 20, two years ago. Of the hundreds of people there that day, he was right next to us.  He was “Doctor No Nonsense” as we named him.  That first day he stressed the severity of Andrew’s brain injury, and he did not want us to try to wake him from his coma because he said the best thing was to let him rest.  Cathy agreed with him, while I agreed with “New York Guy” (from Peekskill) who wanted to take him off sedation and see if he woke up.  Mars Hill brought back that memory, but it also reminded me of the miracles that have occurred along the way.  The touches of God and eternity in ways that say: “I am here and walking with you.”

Yesterday I sat with Ingrid Brofman’s grandmother, Peter Brofman’s first wife’s mother.  She was 89.  She had lost her daughter, her son, her husband, and now was at the funeral for her son-in-law.  She said to me: “I don’t understand the ways of God, but I trust him and I don’t know how anybody can get through these things without faith.”

Her words are my words as I reflect this day.  They are the words spoken by Peter when Jesus asks him if he will leave, after a particularly tough teaching that has caused many disciples to leave.  Peter says: “Lord, to whom can we go? You have the words of eternal life.”  This is the gospel text assigned in the lectionary for this Sunday.  It is the text I will preach on, and it is the text I reflect on as we come to this two year remembrance of that moment.  I am so thankful for a faith that does not have all the answers to why, but has a face of one who speaks to us of eternity.  They are words that are spoken from a grandmother who has gone through hard times, or a father who has prayed for his son, or a disciple who gives his life for the truth of those words.

I am thankful for the words of eternal life this day.

In Christ,