Losing part of a finger, A name, and Heaven: Where is God in all of this?

What is the big deal about someone’s name?  People name their kids after fruits, medical conditions, former athletes, famous politicians, rulers, Greek mythology, and even the urban legend A – A (pronounced Adasha).  Regardless, I am a firm believer in pronouncing names correctly and the meaning of the name.  After all it is the name given to you by those who love you the most on earth.  So when Meghan and I decided to name our son Asher (אָשֵר ) one of the main reasons why is because the name means happy/blessing in Hebrew.  What we did not realize was what the implications of the meaning of his name would be.  Last night we got a taste of his name.

Our 2-year-old Asher had an accident last night and lost the top part of his right index finger. Asher fell out of a metal chair and ripped his nail and tissue underneath.  It also exposed a small bit of bone; have a picture of it but I will spare you from vomiting. The doctors were not able to reattach the top portion of his finger.

I cried this morning wishing that that it was a bad dream.  Meghan felt horrible and guilty wondering what she could have done differently.  No parent wants their child to be hurt even less to lose a part of their body forever; every parent wants a perfectly healthy child. Perfection shattered.  Where is God in all of this?  I mean for crying out loud this is a two-year-old child that was simply having fun!

In the middle feeling hopeless, hoping that none of this was real and that this really was not what Asher’s life would turn out to be, Asher taught us what his life really is about.  Asher began to sing in the Emergency Room:

“The Lord is good to me

And so I thank the Lord

For giving me the things I need

The sun and the rain and the apple seed

The Lord is good to me.”

I was in disbelief, how could he sing “for giving me the things I need?”  Asher then sang the songs Jesus loves me, The Lord has a Will, and God is so good.  The cynic and angry father in me argued and railed within me “He has no clue what he is singing about!  How could God be good, have a will, know what he needs, or even love my son after he just lost his part of his finger forever?!?! He is no longer perfect.”

Then the sane part in my argued “maybe Asher does know what he is singing and what it means.  Maybe I am the one that has one that does not know what those songs mean.”  I got it wrong.  Perfection was being demonstrated to me.  It was demonstrated as Asher checked on another child that was on stretcher with a neck brace.  It was demonstrated to me as Asher took interest in a baby that was crying.  He was showing me what heaven on earth looks like.

There will be days in which we will be sad or disappointed that Asher’s fingers do not all look the same. There will be days that as a family we mourn and cry losses and the pains of life.  There will be days in the future that are not perfect.  However, a piece of Asher is already in heaven. Even better, Asher shared of piece of heaven with me here on earth; trust in God.

God I believe.  Help my unbelief.

Thank you for pieces of hope and faith.

Thank you for Asher (אָשֵר )  sharing heaven with me and thank you for the piece of his finger that is in heaven.

You are God and I am not.



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4 Responses to Losing part of a finger, A name, and Heaven: Where is God in all of this?

  1. Kathy Henton says:

    Thank you, Jonthan Richard Teel, for sharing this with the world. God has been greatly glorified in this experience already and through your willingness to tell it. May He be forever praised. “Though he slay me, still will I trust Him.” We love you, Meghan and sweet Asher. May God grant him rapid healing for his finger and to you for your hearts!

  2. Nathan Henton says:

    Wow. Thank you, Jonathan.

  3. Sherri LaFever says:

    Out of the mouths of babes ❤

  4. Larry Piercy says:

    Thanks for sharing this Jonathan! Our thoughts and prayers have been continuous for Asher, Meghan, and you! You are a blessing to me!

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