When I tuck Cami into bed at night, I say prayers with her. Usually it's requests like "Keep her healthy, safe, and warm," and "Please guard her dreams; give her good dreams and no bad dreams." Sometimes we ask God to take care of all the animals in the world.
Tonight, we prayed for rest for our bodies and minds. We prayed for Daddy to have a better day at work tomorrow, and wisdom and discernment in his search. Cami kept whispering, "Buddy! Buddy!" So we prayed for our Buddy Dog. (He hasn't kept any food down in three days, and all he does is sleep.)
I felt compelled to pray for Uncle David, Aunt Susan, and Erik. I asked Jesus to help them not feel so lonely, and to comfort them tonight as they sleep. After the Amen, this is how the conversation went:
Cami: Mom, why did Fidg have to be five-and-a-half years old?
Me: What do you mean?
Cami: Why did God have to make the swing set fall on Fidg when he was five-and-a-half years old?
Me: I don't think God made the swing set fall on Fidg.
Cami (really softly into her pillow): Maybe the devil pushed it over.
Cami (looking up at me): Maybe the devil pushed it over.
Me: Maybe. (Pause while I wait for what to say.) I can promise you one thing.
Me: Jesus was right there with Fidg. And when it happened, Jesus scooped him up and took him to heaven. And Cami?
Me (smiling larger as each word comes out): When Buddy dies, he'll be in heaven too. We'll miss him here, just like we miss Fidg. But Buddy will get to play with Fidg and the angel collies.
Cami: But why does everybody have to die? (pushing her face into her pillow and starting to wail)
Me: Everybody doesn't die. If they know Jesus, they just move.
Cami (at half-wail): But why does everybody have to move?
I don't remember what I said after that. I do know it's 2:30 a.m. and she is still awake.
So how would you answer the question: Why?