People keep saying, “aren’t you glad you have Jesus?” “Isn’t it great to know God is comforting you?” “How do people make it without Jesus?”… and while this is all true and I don’t discredit Jesus’s salvation, the grace of God or the peace of the Holy Spirit… the things that I am most thankful for… the things that are getting me through this moment by moment is truth. It’s truth I’ve chosen to study and place so much effort into. Truth surrounding Jewish wisdom and teachings of closeness, love, faith and the spiritual… it’s that knowledge, the knowledge Jesus spoke of that is holding me together.
With that truth… that’s so readily available to everyone… I was able to cultivate a beautiful foundation for life. So in moments like this, when my entire life is shifting and shaking because the leader of my home is gone forever… well… I can stand firm and know everything will be ok. That’s one thing God promised me a month ago. He said, “dad will be ok. Everything will be ok.” And when I step back from the equation and look at life, everything is ok. Dad was ok when he died. He wasn’t being controlled by my grandmother anymore… and I know that may be a a lot to say… but dammit it’s how I feel and what I think. My dad choose to take control over his life in those last days and moments in the hospital, and I admire him for that. He choose to let go of bitterness and anger that make us sick in the soul and mind…. and because of that, well…. he is ok.
He did more in the last days of his life in patching up relationships than I could do in the last 4 years. He did things I couldn’t… and you know what? That makes me feel so honored to call him father. It makes me love him even more. And I think the fact that we got to talk about it all before he passed makes it that much better. Because I got to hear about his powerful experiences in the hospital and how he took authority over his own life and broke down so much control in a moment…. It’s powerful.
Now, I lay here in bed and I can’t sleep. I can’t sleep because my mind is so full of thoughts. Things that I want to say and need to say and feelings that are so deep… so deep that I don’t think I’ve tapped into the fullness of them yet.
Today, a friend said, “you were your dad’s happiness. He was happy because you were happy.” And I’ve put some thought into this… mostly because I’ve always been frustrated that my dad wasn’t ever truly happy. His head hung so low so often and it was disheartening. But… I never saw when he was with Bridge and I or spending time with mom that he was happy. So it’s true, his happiness wasn’t found in what I was looking for… it was found in the three women he surrounded himself with. He was filled with the most joy when talking to me on the phone, watching B act or cutting down palm trees with mom. I’ve always looked in all the wrong places for his happiness… but it was within me, and that’s beautiful.
It’s beautiful because I think this is how God is. I believe that God finds his happiness in seeing that we are happy and doing what we love in life. I think he gains happiness when I am sitting by my pool in L.A. on any given day… listening to music and watching the apartment kids splash around in the pool. I think he gains happiness when I drive through down Beverly Hills Blvd to work and think, “gosh, I am so blessed to live in this city and work in such a beautiful home.” I think his happiness comes when he sees me talk to strangers and watch their faces light up within the conversation… Because when it all comes down to it… I am learning that father’s find happiness within their children and as a father, God finds happiness when we find happiness.
It’s taken me a long time to find happiness too. I’ve searched for it for so long. My story has taken me from BPCC to Christ for the Nations to BAMA to Dallas… all in a search for happiness that I am finding within myself in L.A. Packing my life up and moving it across the country in a week was something my dad didn’t want. And honestly, if I had waited 3 months like he asked, well… I wouldn’t have gone because I would’ve been taking care of him. But because I choose to go and just try it… I’ve begun to truly find myself and within that I am so happy, which made my dad happy. It seems so simple, yet it’s so complex. God isn’t complicated, just complex… but we choose to complicate things… and once again, I am learning that happiness… like so many other things is a complex system… so be aware because you never know who is happy because you are happy.