Tuesday, September 18, 2012
God: in Broken Marriages, Cancer, Tragedy, and Heart Attacks
When a husband decides to quit his family, his very wife and children, because it's too hard. When he walks away, out the door that is his life, from the people who count on him for provision, protection, tender care, and a portrait of Fatherly love.
When 37 year-old daddys are diagnosed with cancer. A good man, our friend, a physician and lover of people--they discovered a mass and it's spread to his lymph nodes--I can hardly contain myself from the fear inching its way up my throat.
When 4 year-old girls meet Jesus too soon--playing at naptime and accidentally getting stuck--suffocating. Grief unspoken, heard through screams of a mother and father and sissies who never dreamed they'd have to bury her little body.
When 42 year-old mothers have heart attacks on a hot August night. Out of the blue, three daughters, blonde and lovely, wondering if their mother will be ok. And she was, but the ground shook--I realize I could have been her, she could have been me.
All of this is happening in my world. What is happening in yours?
Once blurry priorities are pretty clear these days.
I feel it acutely. My body is in layout position--stretched as far as it can go--I reach toward Him, in my confusion, pain, worry, fear, and I choose faith, just like some days I choose love, and I choose today, because tomorrow is not a guarantee. He is gracious to hear my plea, and He holds my hand, strokes my hair, and whispers reassurances of His love. Even in the mire, I am not alone.
Most of what consumes us doesn't matter. It's just grass and flowers that wither and fade.
Today is when you stop worrying about your flabby upper arms and fitting in size 6 jeans.
Today is when you give up on a certain dollar amount in the bank, a fake cushion of security you secretly covet.
Today is when you quit re-hashing old, stupid fights with family members over God knows what.
Today is when you climb in bed with your husband, smell his scent, and wrap your arms around him in his sleep, listening to him breathe while you can.
Today is when you read your child another book, even though it's 10 minutes past bedtime and Downtown Abby waits.
Today is when you call your mom and say "I love you," just because.
Today is when you choose not to obsess about clean countertops and spotless floors.
Today is when you throw theology to the wind, hug your brother, lay hands and pray with authority that makes the demons screech.
Today is when you show up.
Today is when you cry out to God--that its not fair, it doesn't make sense, it hurts--and where are You, how could You, why would You, and have You abandoned me to the grave?
Today is when everything becomes urgent, and purposed, and every minute here becomes time you could have spent there.
Today is when you choose. What will you hang on to--clinched fists, white knuckled--and what will you let go of, and will you let fear overtake you, and will you quit living in yesterday?
Today is Pumpkin's birthday. He is 9. I sip these short days and savor every moment.
Be still and know that I am God.