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A Voice in the Wilderness

As nightfall does not come at once, neither does oppression. In both instances, there's a twilight where everything remains seemingly unchanged, and it is in such twilight that we must be aware of change in the air, however slight, lest we become unwitting victims of the darkness. -- William O. Douglas

Saturday, July 01, 2006

He's My Son - Mark Schultz



I was surfing the internet – i-tunes – when I came across an i-mix compilation from a mother (Justine Saylors) dedicated to her son. The i-mix is entitled “Happy Heavenly Birthday Lance.” The boy’s name is Lance Gilbert Kowalski. He succumbed to Neuroblastoma – a particularly deadly type of cancer that afflicts children. The entire collection of songs totals sixty-three and has to be among the most touching grouping that I have ever come across. Listening to the i-mix has helped drive the point home – at least for me – that life is too short and we somehow fail to realize it until it is too late.

I am not certain whether Ms.Saylors will ever chance upon this post but I will say this to her; listening to your selections helps me to see what a precious gift you had. I appreciate your Humanity. I am sorry for your loss. I grieve for you. Most of all, I thank you for giving me an opportunity to meet your son who is featured at this link, www.caringbridge.org/page/lance.

The song is one which Ms. Saylors had on the list. I did google Lance's name and came across a feature in the Washington Post - a very enlightening article.

He's My Son
By; Mark Schultz

I'm down on my knees again tonight
I'm hoping this prayer will turn out right
See there is a boy that needs Your help
I've done all that I can do myself
His mother is tired
I'm sure You can understand
Each night as he sleeps
She goes in to hold his hand
And she tries not to cry
As the tears fill her eyes

Chorus:
Can You hear me?
Am I getting through tonight?
Can You see him?
Can You make him feel all right?
If You can hear me
Let me take his place somehow
See, he's not just anyone
He's my son

Sometimes late at night I watch him sleep
I dream of the boy he'd like to be
I try to be strong and see him through
But God who he needs right now is You
Let him grow old
Live life without this fear
What would I be
Living without him here
He's so tired and he's scared
Let him know that You're there

Chorus:
Can You hear me?
Am I getting through tonight?
Can You see him?
Can You make him feel all right?
If You can hear me
Let me take his place somehow
See, he's not just anyone
He's my son

Repeat Chorus


Can You hear me?
Can You see him?
Please don't leave him
He's my son

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15 Comments:

At Thu Jul 06, 03:33:00 AM MDT, Blogger iamnasra said...

Thank you so much for your post. ...This is one of the post that makes me really want to do more so I can help to beat cancer ...At times having only a voice is not enough

May God be with you

 
At Sat Jul 08, 09:08:00 AM MDT, Blogger sabizak said...

Such proof of why there is no God

 
At Tue Jul 11, 08:42:00 PM MDT, Blogger The Voice said...

sabizak,

Where to begin?

I am listening to Beethoven's final movement of the Ninth Symphony right now and I must say it moves me in a way which does reaffirm my belief in a God who cannot be seen, a God who cannot be named, a God who seems so far away at times – How ironic that it might be something as secular as the Ninth to move me to feel that way!

I believe – in accordance with my Judeo-Christian upbringing - that we are created in God's likeness. This includes occasionally thinking like gods. Thus, it is not surprising to me that we - with the power to think like gods - might conclude there is no God.

Why we were created, I do not know. Perhaps I will never know. However, I am certain that the one who cannot be named or seen takes no offense when we Humans conclude that there is no God. That is our fault; we can only look at the universe through eyes of beings who are God-like and not gods ourselves.

I remain convinced that there is indeed a superior being responsible for all that is. I also believe that since mine [and yours as well] is a limited understanding of the unexplainable - something only the mind of a God can fathom - it is no wonder we fall short when it comes down to making sense of it all.

The Roman Catholic Cardinal John Newman once said, “For those who have faith no explanation is necessary. For those who do not believe, no explanation will suffice.” Consequently, for me, death, Human suffering, hatred, cruelty and disaster are all the more reason to believe in a just, loving and kind God. They serve as powerful reminders for me that I do not fully comprehend the universe. Yes, I am cognizant that life, death and suffering occurs every day but I cannot explain the ‘why’ of it. That is not reason enough to lose my faith. What I do know is that suffering and death are part of the circle of life - the dues we must pay in order to live. To someone else – such phenomena are proof-positive that God does not exist.

Now, before you echo the Voltaire’s notion that, ‘religion started when the first liar met the first fool,’ I will say that I am in no way a, ‘religious’ person per sé. I maintain one can believe in God without being religious. My reason for believing abides in spite of the reality that religion is a Human invention which is subject to meddling and interpretation. In short, religion only serves as a vehicle for whatever individual or group’s particular agenda may be. It provides the formula for radicals and fundamentalists to foist their brand of spirituality on others.

I do have to wonder what the creator must think as the world's 'believers' torture and kill His children in the name of God.

Perhaps it is just as well for I am not a God. Suffice it to say that I do have faith in God and not the institutions which invoke his name to justify hatred and isolationism. Additionally, I like the notion about believing in God – attributed to the mathematician, Blaise Pascal, “If God exists and I do not believe, then I have something to lose. If God does not exist and I nonetheless believe, then I have lost nothing for believing.” To that end, it makes sense for any one to wager their bet that a God actually does exist.

My faith is much more rooted than any silly old wager. I do not believe that God exists - I know that God exists. For me the proof exists everywhere. It is in creation itself. Look at a Human eye. Listen to a child. View the simplest microbe. Watch the sun rise and there is all the proof you will need. Our technologically dependent minds tend to overlook the miracles that surround us every day while miracles abound.

For the time being, I am content with hearing such music or looking into the eyes of a child because they affirm my belief that there is a divine plan. I hope one day to be enlightened to it all. I will continue to pray for peace, justice and understanding knowing all the while that my creator is listening.

In closing, I entirely respect your position on the relevance of God's existence - that is your right. We just happen to disagree. What I sense is a jaded perspective and to that I refer to the ancient Chinese proverb which, paraphrased goes like this, 'blessed is the one who suffers for it is in suffering that s/he truly knows s/he is alive.' I sense that you are very alive.

By the way, I have reviewed your blog sit and it is without a doubt one of the most wonderful i have seen. Thank you for the vignettes of your world - they are equally as fascinating as they are entertaining. You are a wonderful communicator and I find your perspectives as refreshing as they are entertaining. I have wanted to say, 'Hello' from across the planet for quite some time and I suppose this is my opportunity.

Thank you for visiting and,
May many blessings be upon you.

J

 
At Sun Jul 23, 01:48:00 PM MDT, Blogger sabizak said...

Oh! I just read all this as I returned to your blog after a while. Thank You so very much for your detailed response, it really touched me that you expressed yourself at such great length. I might not believe in a God after reading it but it just makes me happy that there are at least some believers in the world who do not believe in a destructive religion at least.
I am glad you liked my blog, though it did make me wonder whether some of the references puzzled you/didn't make sense. Many of us in Pakistan have grown up so much on American pop culture that in some ways we can very easily relate to those people halfway across the planet. Hope you will keep visiting as i undoubtedly will. :)

 
At Tue Jul 25, 01:53:00 PM MDT, Blogger iamnasra said...

I tried getting the link to read more of it..I was not able to...Can u give the web adress if u dont mind

 
At Tue Jul 25, 01:57:00 PM MDT, Blogger The Voice said...

http://www.caringbridge.org/page/lance/

 
At Thu Aug 10, 04:57:00 PM MDT, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I wanted to share my thoughts with each of you reading this. I have a son who was diagnosed with leukemia 4 years ago as well as sub-bacterial endocarditis. My son also has Down's syndrome. For our family, he has been the greatest gift. He has taught us more about love and life than I have ever known. We have 4 other children (each older) who have lived their lives with a greater compassion because of their little brother. Sabizak, you feel there is no God...but honestly, it has been through our son's life that we have seen the love of God through the lives of others. I think many of us view God like a lottery ticket and that He is to make all thing perfect. Yet, humanity does not understand perfect. We can only grasp our concept of it.

Each moment I share with my child is a gift that I will never take for granted. Spend time with a family who has a special child and you will quickly learn to view life from a totally new perspective.

 
At Wed Aug 16, 07:55:00 AM MDT, Blogger RB said...

An inspiring song indeed... I trust in the Sovereign God, though there are many things He does and allows which I may never understand this side of heaven.

 
At Sat Sep 09, 09:25:00 PM MDT, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I really want to thank u for posting these lyrics...and I hope that everyone who reads this pray for all of the children around the world in physical health conditions. My nephew is having a huge operation coming up. He has VATERS syndrome and needs to have the surgery. VATERS is like having the worst type of scoliosis possible. A few of his ribs are missing, one lung is smaller than the other, and he needs a feeding tube at night because he needs to keep gaining weight for the surgery. He'll be 2 yrs old in December and we are all praying for him and hope that you keep him in your thoughts and prayers as well. Again, thank u for the lyrics, they have touched my heart and truly help me to keep my strength, trust, and hope in God.

 
At Sun Sep 10, 08:57:00 AM MDT, Blogger The Voice said...

Anonymous,

Every child on this little blue ball where we live is our child. My heart goes out to your nephew in this troubled time. It is so hard to make sense of such suffering.

I keep you in my thoughts and will continue to pray for the baby's well-being.

Thank you for your post.

 
At Fri Nov 02, 03:12:00 PM MDT, Anonymous Rachel said...

My dad and I have a bunch of cd's of Mark Schultz songs. But this one song every time I try NOT TO CRY. It toughes my heart deep. But in a good way. This shows that when you pray god not might always answer, but he helps. May god bless you all.

 
At Sun Mar 09, 10:07:00 AM MDT, OpenID walkr9 said...

This is such a touching song. I just lost my nephew at 3 weeks after he suffered from braindeath after choking during a feeding. My whole family is hurting and these lyrics say it all. His name was Pierce Gabriel and he is now our angel. He is survived by his twin sister Cadence, who is doing well. Please keep us in your thoughts.

Thank you and God Bless,
Lisa and the Walker family

 
At Mon Mar 10, 07:53:00 AM MDT, Blogger The Voice said...

Lisa,

My heart is with you and your family. I just finished reading, "Living a life that Matters" bu Harold S, Kushner. Closer to the end of his book, he touches upon loss of a loved one and how especially difficult such loss can be when the person who dies is young. The book touches upon themes related to living a life of significance in the face of adversity. It is not really a heavy book to handle and it does offer up some insights with wisdom that only a person mellowed by age could relate with such poignancy and empathy.

I appreciate his heartfelt observations and found them to be comforting. Perhaps it is a book that you might like to read at this time in your life. It may be of some help.

You remain in my prayers.

Be safe,
J

 
At Fri May 30, 02:28:00 PM MDT, Blogger nadnadwife said...

I note that Justine passed away - perhaps more prayers are in order for her family. Thought you'd want to know.

 
At Tue Mar 10, 09:22:00 PM MDT, Blogger Nita said...

First, let me say thank you for the calm and caring atmosphere of this blog. So often when the conversation turns to religion, it can also turn very cruel...on the part of the religious and the non-religious alike. That hasn't happened here. What a wonderful thing.
Secondly, I'd like to tell you of the first time I ever heard Mark Schultz's song "He's My Son". On December 30, 2005 my adult son ended up in the hospital with a collapsed lung that just wouldn't heal. He spent 12 days in the hospital, and ended up having to have surgery to repair the lung. Meanwhile, I was providing care for my sister, who was dying of cancer at the time. Day after day I drove back and forth from my sisters house to the hospital to see my son. During the wee hours, as I drove home from the hospital one night, "He's My Son" came on the radio. I had to pull the car over to the side of the road, as I sat there and cried. While I knew that my son wasn't dying, the picture of me sitting at his bedside night after night came to me so strongly. I suddenly had an understanding of the pain a parent feels at losing a child, and with that came the understanding of what my own parents must be going through at that very moment as they sat by knowing that one of their daughters was dying. Just because they grow up and become adults doesn't make them any less "your baby".
Thank you for sharing the lyrics of this song with us all. So many of us feel a connection to that song in one way or another.
God Bless,
Nettie

 

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