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Sunday, April 10, 2011

Going with us

The week before last was hard.  I was emotionally, physically and spiritually spent.  In fact, I was distant from God.  As the challenges of the week piled up, I repeatedly fell under the pressure.  While I should've fallen on my knees, I instead fell into sin.  I finally reached a point where I started crying - very publicly - in a parking lot, where a very nice woman felt compelled to make sure my children and I were alright.  (That encounter wasn't significant, outside of the mere kindness of it, but it sticks with me for some reason.)  I wasn't embarrassed; I was broken.  I decided I couldn't handle any more issues with Mikey.  That night, he choked and earned himself an ambulance ride.

As I retold the story to the pastor last Sunday, I said, "We're really aware of Mikey's disabilities righ tnow."  Something about that statement seemed profound to me, though I didn't know why.  The pastor didn't seem to notice anything, so I continued with the conversation.  Even though I've been trying to forget about Mikey's difficulties, I've just been burying everything.  I've even been in denial.  Perhaps that's why that statement resounded so loudly - I wasn't speaking of this week; I was speaking of life in general, of the last year and a half.

When I got home, I started reading The Power of a Whisper, as I mentioned in a previous post.  I read every chance I got all afternoon.  That night, I read something that I've often admitted to be true, but I've been using the wrong tense:

"Therefore it should come as no surprise that a certain number of whispers that come our way will drive us to our knees and stretch our faith like nothing else can."

I've long spoken of how Mikey's first 14 months brought us closer to each other and to God and taught us to fully rely on Him.  My mistake was thinking God was done with that chapter.  I just wanted that to be in the past so badly that I convinced myself that it was.  He's not done when we want Him to be; He's done when He says He's done.

I've said we went through these things to help others who are going through them.  I was wrong.  We are going throught these things...  God is putting us through this - going with us through this - for a reason.  Whatever that reason is, it is important for us - for me - to remember that God is with us through everything.

Just this morning I was reading this poem - for the thousanth time - during church (it's hanging above the altar...I wasn't slacking off).  I found it an especially timely read.

One night I dreamed I was walking along the beach with the Lord.
Many scenes from my life flashed across the sky.
In each scene I noticed footprints in the sand.
Sometimes there were two sets of footprints,
other times there were one set of footprints.

This bothered me because I noticed
that during the low periods of my life,
when I was suffering from
anguish, sorrow or defeat,
I could see only one set of footprints.

So I said to the Lord,
"You promised me Lord,
that if I followed you,
you would walk with me always.
But I have noticed that during
the most trying periods of my life
there have only been one
set of footprints in the sand.
Why, when I needed you most, you have not been there for me?"

The Lord replied,
"The times when you have
seen only one set of footprints,
is when I carried you."

~Mary Stevenson~

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