The morning after the helicopter crash that took the lives of nine people, including NBA legend Kobe Bryant, Bishop T.D Jakes was on The Breakfast Club. “How do you make sense of that? How could that have been God’s plan?” That was the first question put to the Bishop by one of the hosts of the radio show. Pictures and videos of the Bryant family have been circulating round social media non-stop since the tragic accident. Each time I see these images, the surreality of the events of last week sets in afresh and I cannot help but think. Of all the grieving families who have been thrust into mourning, their lives forever redefined. Of the talented teenage girls on the flight, including Gianna Bryant who many thought would carry her father’s legacy. Of the nuclear Altobelli family who lost both parents and a sibling. Really, how could that have been God’s plan?
I love the fact that the Bishop was asked that question because what we often hear is “Who are we to question God?” The truth is that deep down in our hearts, we all have questions and these questions multiply and plague our minds more intensely when unexplainable things happen. Stephen Curry’s tribute to Bryant was a picture of the players embracing each other, with the caption “A lot of questions right now. Our faith is being tested…but all I can say is thank you. May you and Gianna rest easy.” I appreciate that Curry was vulnerable enough to admit that sometimes things happen that put our faith to the test and leave us with a myriad of questions. In my opinion, there is nothing wrong with having questions. The problem is we often demand answers to these questions and we desire to know and understand the intricacies of those answers. If we knew and understood everything, why then would we need faith in the first place? My knowledge, my power, my ability to be in full control, are all limited and the sudden death of a person who in many ways seemed immortal, reminded me of that last week . Yet, I take solace in the fact that I do not have to know it all because God is all-knowing.
As you watch God’s plan for your life unfold, you may not know what the next chapter holds but you know the author, and that’s enough. You’ll have questions along the way and there are times when things won’t make any sense. That’s part of the plan because God works in mysterious ways, sometimes too mysterious for our mortal minds to fathom. When we choose to walk with God, we choose faith and faith by its very definition requires complete confidence. The tail end of Sevyn Streeter’s tribute to Bryant read “Today our spirits bow to God with gratitude, for we know we’ve [borne] witness to a phenomenon.” This made me realise that even in heart-wrenching situations such as someone’s passing, the fact that all those who loved the person got to experience them in this lifetime is a blessing. Being confident in and content with God’s plan should not only be relevant when we see the good so clearly, but more so, when the good in the situation is hidden so skillfully by God that it is hard to find.
*P.S I apologise if I have referred to Kobe Bryant too much without acknowledging the other passengers on board as much, whose lives are in no way less valuable. Since Bryant was a public figure, I know more about his demise (tributes, etc).
Bible Verse: “I know that my redeemer lives, and that in the end he will stand on the earth”- Job 19: 25
Prayer Request: Today we’re praying for the souls of John, Keri and Alyssa Altobelli, Kobe and Gianna Bryant, Ara Zobayan, Sarah and Payton Chester and Christina Mauser. May they rest peacefully and may God grant extraordinary strength to their families.
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