Monday, February 28, 2011

Greatly Shaken

The last seven days have been a roller coaster ride for our family. Monday night I took my son to the ER. He had been sick with a virus for about a week and I was worried he was dehydrated. He was. They started him on fluids but when he didn’t improve they decided to run a few more tests.

I knew before they came in to tell me. Call it mothers intuition, or the grace of God, but I knew that my faith would be stretched before they gave us the test results. When the doctor came in to tell us they wanted to transfer us to Arkansas Children’s Hospital to meet with a pediatric neurologist and oncologist I was uncharacteristically at peace. A verse I had memorized years ago flooded my mind and stayed with me for days.

He only is my rock, my salvation, my stronghold. I shall not be greatly shaken. Ps. 62:6

In that moment, facing the unknown I had to decide. Is God good or not? Could I trust Him with my son? Could I trust that whatever the outcome, He knew what He was doing.

The answer, without hesitation is YES! God is good. And He loves me. And whatever circumstances I face that reality will not change.

Not that my resolve was unwavering. The mind is a terrible thing that can vividly imagine the worst possible outcomes, especially when mixed with sleep deprivation. Minute by minute I had to take my thoughts captive and choose to trust. But He is so gracious, and so kind. And so very near to those who call on Him. And He was there with us in that hospital. He never left our side.

We were transferred to ACH (which is beyond amazing, by the way). More tests, more waiting. There are about 5 really scary things that could have been life altering for us. Thankfully none of those were the cause. After 24 hours at Children’s the doctors started talking about sending us home. With very little medical intervention Joshua’s body began to return to normal.

I told the doctors he had a lot of people praying for him. They just looked at me like I was crazy! I am! So is the God I serve! :o)

We are home now. Trying to return to “normal” whatever that is. Joshua is getting better every day. And I’m so thankful.

So many of you have prayed for him. I can’t tell you how thankful we are for your prayers. God heard, and has graciously answered.


Friday, February 4, 2011

Snow and Graveclothes

As I sit here a blanket of snow covers the world. Softly, silently wrapping us in beauty. As each snowflake dances its way past my window pane by heart settles in, content, and my thoughts turn to Mary and Martha. Martha, busy serving, working, doing. And Mary, settled in at the Saviors feet like the sweet winter snow.

And my heart is torn. Between these two women. The two roles they played. Neither bad, but the one was better. That day at Martha’s house Mary chose the better. I, like Martha, choose the good. I choose to serve, to keep busy, to do. Never time to sit, to soak, to marvel in the beauty.

So Jesus, patient, gentle Jesus, sends the snow. And the whispered “slow down, be still”.

And I am.

He sent the snow to Martha too. Only it didn’t settle in drifts, it wrapped in death. Just as the white flakes settle in to still me, strips of white linen wrapped lovingly around the body of the beloved brother stilled Martha’s heart as well.

“When Martha heard that Jesus was coming, she went out to meet him, but Mary stayed at home.” John 11:20

Martha, with a house full of company, with a funeral supper to prepare, with guests to attend to, leaves it all and runs to Jesus. And in her world, wrapped in white silence, He redeems her. He receives her. And Martha chooses the better, she chooses Jesus.

She has grown. She has learned.

And here in this holy moment, this moment of second chances Jesus speaks, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies, and whoever lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?” “Yes, Lord, I believe.” And she does.

She believes that life must be lived in Him. That silent, cold, white worlds are not without hope. That even in death there is only one place she longs to be. Sitting with Jesus, at His feet, holding His hand.

And so it is with you and I; the ones who have chosen the good, and neglected the best. The ones who have lived by our own rules, holding tight to our own ways. The ones who feel frustrated, and worried about many things. We too are invited to come. To find words of life. To find healing. To find love.

It’s snowing harder now. As if God in Heaven is throwing a party for his precious child, I can hear Him beckoning me to come. Come and sit, come and worship. Come dance with the King. For soon, so soon, spring will come and the grave clothes will melt away into summer.

And we will live. Truly live.