Could You Worship with a Broken Heart?

Today in church, the worship team began singing “Our God,” by Chris Tomlin. As we got to the chorus:

“Our God is greater
Our God is stronger
God you are higher than any other
Our God is Healer
Awesome in power
Our God, Our God and if our God is for us
Then who could ever stop us
And if our God is with us
Then what could stand against”

I raised my hands to the sky praising my God who is stronger and is a healer. Suddenly I was overcome with emotion as I thought about Ethan Hallmarkand Kylie Rowand. Ethan Hallmark was a 13-year-old courageous little boy who died two days ago after a 4-year battle with cancer. Kylie Rowand is a two-year-old precious baby girl who has just relapsed and her doctors have given up. My arms fell down and I couldn’t stop the tears from falling onto my shirt. It is so easy for us to stand in church and worship with joy in our hearts. It is so easy for us to clap along to the songs about how good our God is. It is so easy to listen to the pastor share about how we are created in God’s image. It is so easy for us to be inspired to love more and love deeper. But damnit, you know what makes that hard? When you loose your teenager who had a dream to play baseball, a sweet boy who whispered to his mama over and over during his last few days of life, that he loved her. When you are told your two-year-old baby girl is probably not going to live to see her 3rd birthday.

The congregation kept worshiping. I heard voices singing out to Him and praising Him. All I kept thinking was, could I hold my hands high in worship if I was in those circumstances? I don’t think I could. When Kicker was first diagnosed, I felt this deep anger toward God. How could HE let this happen? It took at least a few months for me to begin talking to Him again, trusting Him and crying out to Him. It will be almost 10 months from when Kicker was diagnosed, and I now am confident in the Lord’s calling for our family. I am confident He will heal my son. I have peace and joy as I have seen the incredible healing that has taken place in my son.  Now it is ‘easy’ for me to raise my hands in worship.  

I stood there weak and numb. I couldn’t raise my arms again up if I wanted. I couldn’t even mutter the words to the rest of the worship song. I just cried, as quietly and controlled as I could.  Do you know what Ethan said recently, before he died? He said, “If I do die from this disease, I’m going to kneel before my Savior and hope He says, 'well done, good and faithful servant.'” He was 13. His faith was unmovable. He knew his maker had a plan for his life. I want Ethan’s spirit. I want that peace.

After church, a friend came up to me and said, “How are you doing?” I just wanted to breakdown and fall into her arms and tell her how my heart is literally breaking apart for these children and parents. I wanted to tell her how unfair it was. I wanted to ask her why this loving God of ours would let this happen. But I held it together and I clenched my jaw to keep the tears in. I told her we are great and that I have a busy week ahead planning our first annual KICKcancER Retreat that we are so excited about.

I don’t want anymore kids to die. I don’t think my heart could break into any smaller pieces. Someone asked the other day “how do you have the time and energy to start a foundation to help other kids, you have so much on your plate.” How? Well, if you knew there was something that could possibly help children who are fighting for their life, wouldn’t you find the time? I will do whatever it takes and I won’t stop. I know that it is not I who is able to save children’s lives, but I do know that God can use me to share His truth about how to help these babies heal, and I sure as hell am going to do it. So I  challenge both you and I…in the darkest, deepest pain, will we be able to stand and worship our Savior who IS good? If we knew our end was near, cold we have faith like Ethan and proclaim “If I do die  I’m going to kneel before my Savior and hope He says, 'well done, good and faithful servant.”

2 Comments

Season Johnson

Season Johnson, B.A., NTP uses her knowledge in preventive healthcare and nutrition science to educate families on how to achieve real health in a real-life way. Through a nutrient dense diet, detox remedies and healthy living, she is helping her 3 year old son, beat cancer and thrive during conventional treatment.