Just Taken? Death Was Supposed To Be Foreign To Us.

Maurice Carter - May God allow me to leave behind such a legacy of love...

There have been a number of conspiracy theories surrounding the sudden death of my dear friend Maurice.  I’ve heard people talking about what might have actually happened the night he disappeared.  I’m not going to share any of those thought processes with you now for the sake of his family, and too, I do not want to plant those questionable seeds in your mind.  The human mind has a great ability to build and accept “truths” out of a mound of lies.

Here are my questions.  What if God just took him?  Like Enoch, or the prophet Elijah?  What if God looked down and decided that Maurice did a great job and deserved heaven for his reward?  What if this is the only explanation?  Does that make God bad?

Jesus stood at the tomb of Lazarus and wept.  He wasn’t weeping because He was hopeless.  Jesus knew exactly what He was about to do, but I believe He wept because death was never intended to be a part of our reality.  The physical death we all will face is a result of this fallen world.  As Jesus stood peering into Lazarus’ grave, He was faced with the reality of what He was about to endure to remedy the hold death had on mankind.  In that moment Jesus wept for His friend Lazarus, but I believe He was experiencing the sorrow, and weight, of death itself.  But then He spoke, “Lazarus Come Forth!”

Jesus, in His humanness, stood at a grave site feeling it’s finality.  That day Jesus, as I AM, gave a preview of what was about to unfold three days after we bury Him.  Just as Lazarus came out alive from his tomb, Jesus was about to walk out of His own earthly grave.  The finality of the death we taste is still subject to be obedient to God’s command.  It too must submit to His will.

Lazarus, come forth!”  And he who had died came out bound hand and foot with grave-clothes, and his face was wrapped with a cloth.  Jesus said to them, “Loose him, and let him go.” – John 11:43b-44

God has all authority, even over the death of our physical bodies.  So, what if God took him from us?

When my husband was killed many people came to me asking, “Why?”  Why did Warren have to be where he was?  Why did we make the stops along the way in our travels that led us to that place at that exact moment?  Why did God allow Tim Baker to leave the bar when he did?  There were countless questions I was asked to answer that night, and the weeks and months after Warren’s death.  The answer is simple, I don’t know.  I cannot answer for what God allows and what He does not. Truthfully, I still think He doesn’t make sense.  What I think and what He knows rarely ever line up.  I do know that He is God and I am not.  Warren and Maurice belong to Him, and death has no power that God has not given it.  However those precious to me leave this earth, however God chooses to take me from this earth, is all up to His sovereign hand.

We wrestle with the reason and search for more detail because death was supposed to be foreign to us.  We seek and create answers to cope with the mystery of the unknown.  Before Adam and Eve bit into the forbidden fruit we had no knowledge of what we call death.  Sorrow was not part of our design.  We invited this in when we decided to have our eyes “opened” to be like God “knowing good and evil.” (Gen. 3:4-5)It was at this moment in time that redemption’s plan was set into motion.

Why Warren?  Why Maurice?  Why death?  WHY WOULD GOD?

The righteous perishes, And no man takes it to heart; Merciful men are taken away, While no one considers that the righteous is taken away from evil.” – Isaiah 57:1

It may just be God’s grace extended to His own.

And Enoch walked with God; and he was not, for God took him.” – Genesis 5:24

Maybe God did just take them?  Whichever theory we decide to believe surrounding the death of our friends and loved ones, we can rest in the fact that God is good and His mercies endure forever.  If we find ourselves questioning God or even getting angry at Him, we must remember that it was our own choosing to have our eyes opened, but God’s grace has made a way through Jesus that we can again walk with Him in peace.

Death may feel final for those of us left behind, but true life, restored life, is waiting beyond its veil.

For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.  So when this corruptible has put on incorruption, and this mortal has put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written: “Death is swallowed up in victory.”

O Death, where is your sting?
O Hades, where is your victory?” – 1 Corinthians 15:53-55

If there’s no other answer to the multiple questions in our mind but that God is God and He chooses rightly, are we willing to trust and rest in Him?


2011, Keeping It Real!


Saying goodbye to this friend is a searing knife through the heart, but it’s also the sweetest joy because of the absolute truth that this is only a temporary parting. JESUS is enough and has made a way. Until we all have the honor Maurice has been granted, we must carry the torch forward.


  1. mnickles7 said,

    06/06/2011 at 11:50

    I pray for comfort over his family. He was a very pleasant person to be around and was always smiling. The world has lost a great man, but heaven has gained a new angel. 🙂

  2. Patrick said,

    06/06/2011 at 11:50

    Shannan, this is almost the same discussion we had about our young Honduran friend, God took him to keep him from the evil in this world that He knew may befall Tito if he stayed here longer. It will be a great reunion that day in heaven!

  3. Tommy McKenzie said,

    06/07/2011 at 11:50

    I’m still shocked at the death of Maurice Carter. But what has stuck with me the most is a quote by his mom after this happened.

    “In the end, we serve an all wise and loving God who makes no mistakes and does us no wrong.” – Verma Carter

    She recognizes what I think we are all struggling and trying to learn. If that is not the application of Romans 8:28, then I don’t know what is.

    “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose.”

    Death will always be hard for us to deal with. But as Christians we have a great hope. Death is not the end, but more of a transition. Maurice and Warren may not be with us in body, but they are alive. They are more alive than they ever have been. We often do not understand why God allows things to happen, but the awesome thing is we do not have to. We just have to put our faith and trust in Him.

    Great blog posting!

    • 06/07/2011 at 11:50

      Thank you, and well said my friend! I just spoke with Verma. As usual, she, like Maurice, was radiant with God’s anointing – even in the season of grief. I have to admit that I’m jealous of the life they now fully live, but we are still here to carry the torch. You are doing a great job of this Tommy.

  4. Gloria said,

    06/09/2011 at 11:50

    Beautifully Conveyed… truth, love, inspiration to carry on… to fight the good fight…

  5. Debby Gibson said,

    01/15/2014 at 11:50

    He was such an awesome example of what he believed, I am so sorry to just now find out he’s gone. I will look forward to seeing him in heaven… he & his precious family made such an impression on me so many years ago. I still miss them and am crying while I write this. He was the inspiration for me writing the poem ” I love the Jesus in you” because I needed a way to tell him what his friendship meant to me. I loved this man, his music and his spirit. God bless his family

    • 01/15/2014 at 11:50

      I’m so sorry you are just now hearing about Maurice’s passing, Debby. I still have his picture on my refrigerator. He was always a light in my world, and I really miss our coffee chats. Thankfully this is not the end!

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