Sunday, January 10, 2010

For my friends who are suffering...

I want to share an excerpt from the book I'm devouring now (this is ruining my 52/52 plans, because I've read three books this week and they were all great and one was supposed to be my classical for this coming week).  It's Madeleine L'Engle's "Two-Part Invention" (you might know her from the Wrinkle in Time series).  At this moment, in the book, her husband is suffering from cancer:

     "My friend Dana and I talk about how we want to make everything all right for those we love, and cannot.  Her mother died of pancreatic cancer only a few months ago.  We say to each other that if we were God we would make everything all right, and then we stop.  Look at each other.  Because we suddenly see that making everything all right would not make everything all right.  We would not be human beings.  We would then be no more than puppets obeying the strings of the master puppeteer.  We agree sadly that it is a good that we are not God; we do not have to understand God's ways, or the suffering and brokenness and pain that sooner or later come to us all.
     "But we do have to know in the very depths of our being that the ultimate end of the story, no matter how many aeons it takes, is going to be all right."

This really is an incredible book.  I'll review it once I'm done.  I wanted to post this, because I know a few people that have been suffering so many losses and I am such a dunce.  I hope this helps them, it is far better than I could've ever said.


  1. I read this book several years ago and it really was incredible. I lost my son to cancer almost 10 years ago (he was five) so I was interested in her view of suffering. While I don't remember this exact quote I do remember thinking *she really gets it*.

    Thanks for sharing - I am looking forward to reading your review!

  2. Liza, you have to go to my reading blog. There's a link under the heading and big picture at the top of the page :)

    I'm so sorry about your son. I could not imagine the strength needed to face such excrement (as L'Engle put it).