The mere edges of His ways

May 26th, 2017

Another adoptive mom emailed me earlier this year with a request.  Would I be willing to contribute a chapter to a book of personal stories about adoption?  This book is for the purpose of encouraging other adoptive parents who are in the trenches.  Yes, I do want to be part of this endeavor.

In the course of time, I spent a day at A Quiet Place and wrote the story of Tommy and our family.  This week, I finally sent it off to the adoptive mom.  I have her permission to share her response with you.


Thank you for sending your story. You have been such a help to me, and I had no idea you have been through so much. Your trench was so deep, oceanic even.

I had an email written up for you that I had hoped would be encouraging. I used my youngest daughter’s nap time. I didn’t send it because I wanted to pray about it some more. Immediately after I got her up, my older six-year-old daughter turned to me and asked me a random question.

She said, “What happened to your bees?”

My bees….

“Oh,” I told her, “They drowned.”

When I started to say it, the words got stuck in my throat. They had died back in January. I realized the significance of the statement, because I had been writing you an email about Tommy’s passing.

She then asked me, “Why did they drown?”

I was stuck. I thought for a moment and said, “I don’t know.” And she said, “Ok,” and walked away.

Truly, I don’t know why all my bees chose to drown themselves in their sugar water one day. It was upsetting to me, and I have no idea why it happened. It was a weird thing that’s not even on any beekeeper web-forum. Whenever I look at my empty bee hive, I’m sad, and I think, “Why the heck did that happen?”

Bees are nothing compared to a child, and I’m not saying that.

All I’m feeling is that God is telling me that I don’t know why that happened to Tommy.

My ways aren’t His ways, my thoughts aren’t His thoughts, His ways are higher than my ways, and His thoughts higher than my thoughts. So I’m not going to send you the other email that I had hoped would be encouraging. I’ll just let you know that God spoke through my six-year-old today to point blank tell me that I don’t know why, and that’s all He chose to share with me.



When Job’s three friends, Eliphaz the Temanite, Bildad the Shuhite and Zophar the Naamathite, heard about all the troubles that had come upon him, they set out from their homes and met together by agreement to go and sympathize with him and comfort him. When they saw him from a distance, they could hardly recognize him; they began to weep aloud, and they tore their robes and sprinkled dust on their heads. Then they sat on the ground with him for seven days and seven nights. No one said a word to him, because they saw how great his suffering was.


Rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep.


This photo of Tommy was taken three years ago this weekend, at the Big Families and Friends Picnic.

Tom-Tom at the big picnic



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4 Responses to “The mere edges of His ways”

  1. Missy says:

    Thank you for that picture of Tommy. I miss him.

  2. Louisa says:

    I am sure you walk through many memories of sweet Tommy during your days….thank you for sharing about him….you are brave and courageous and loved on that boy in amazing ways. Oh are amazing and we thank you for sharing your story. Hugs

  3. Mark M. says:

    Thank you, Susanna.

    God is a great God, above all Gods, and sometimes tears come when I consider that the eternal Son took on flesh and He dwelt among us, and now promises that we will dwell with Him and be His people.

    Blessed Pentecost. May the Comforter and Advocate bring you peace.

    Also, we are always thankful to you for being instrumental in our own road. The rubber is about to meet it, again.

  4. Cassandra says:

    I’m so sorry for your tremendous loss. So many hopes and dreams dashed, of that I am sure. What do you with the pain? Is it even realistic to think that it’s manageable?

    What I know for sure is that Tommy is whole and well. I know you wanted more – more , more , more. More mommying , more smiles, more uniquely Tommy time. More Tommy.

    Even typing his name makes me smile a little. (Disclosure – my brother is named Tommy and to this day I have not met one single Tommy that could not be described as “a pistol.” There is no Tommy in the world that isn’t larger than life. Seriously!)

    I don’t have any words closer to what I’d like to express other than, I am so sorry for your tremendous loss. When I say your, I mean the whole Musser family.

    I imagine Tommy, at some level, is on your mind almost always. You may have set out to change the rest of his life but in the best sense of the word, he ended up changing yours. I’m different because through the magic of the internet, I knew him a little bit, too.

    Currently our family is suffering (sounds dramatic but considering the circumstance is not) through a betrayal of the worse kind. An “incident” at church has rendered us speechless, stunned and wondering if we ever really knew these people at all. Tommy, and children like him, are never and will never be part of tearing down the body of Christ. So yea, I followed his journey with joy. Thank you for bringing him home to your family. You did the right thing.

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