Love for the broken heart…

I have been listening to Third Day’s Cry out to Jesus lately. Over and over and over again…

My family is sick, my son has a condition that no one seems to know how to treat, my daughter is feeling the lack of attention as her daddy and I work around the clock to figure out where to go next in her brother’s options.

And the icing on the cake? The sleepless nights that lead into long, stressful days.

I have never been more afraid in my life of the unknown than I am now. I have also never been more certain of God’s unending Grace and sovereign control over every aspect of our lives.

How does that oxymoron work you might ask?

I have also never spent more time on my knees before the throne of God than I do now.

I have gone through trials and struggles in my life and have sought God’s guidance during those times. I struggle through doubts and temptations and questions when my life seems to be taking a turn for the worst.

And really, I cannot say that my life has been all that laden in trials. Some might even call it charmed. God has blessed us with good health, a roof over our heads, beautiful children, a strong God-centered marriage, and even many of our wants supplied.

I struggle with fear. Even in light of all the blessings, I struggle to comprehend the full extent of God’s love for me. It truly does overcome all fears. But I have to surrender my fears to God in order for Him to work.

How difficult it is for me as a mother to open my arms and surrender. My children are and always will be God’s. His first and on loan to me for a brief time.

Yet I want to scream out! “I bore this child within me for nine months. I labored to bring him/her into this world. It was MY sweat and blood and tears. MY child. You cannot have them.”

You know what I fear the most? I fear what happens when I finally say, “I surrender my children to Your Will God. No matter what they belong to You! You give and you take away; blessed be Your name.”

I ache for my son when he cries for endless moments and does not seem to be comforted by anything I do. I want to rage at the doctors (who are only human) when they cannot give me answers to the questions I so desperately long to know. I weep when exhaustion has stretched me to the limits and I do not feel like I can go on any longer – I want to crawl into a little ball and hide myself from the world until all the pain goes away.

In the end, I consecrated my son and my daughter to God the moment I found out they were growing within me. It is a daily – often moment by moment – struggle to surrender them into the best place they can possibly be. In God’s loving, healing, amazing arms.

I will struggle tomorrow when the lack of sleep and lowered immune system brings our family down. I will struggle when the next doctor tells me they have never seen Luke’s condition before before deciding that they would still like to experiment on him to see if they get good results. I will struggle as Luke’s weight may or may not start increasing and we have to worry about a possible failure to thrive. I will struggle as the genetics counselor tells us what could possibly be plaguing my son on a DNA level.

But I can – and will – do ALL things through Christ who strengthens me. The Joy of the Lord IS my strength in mysterious and powerful ways. And if I cry out to Jesus, He WILL meet me wherever I am. And He will hold me tightly in His loving, strong, healing, AMAZING arms – just as He holds my children there too.

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Rest for the Weary

Okay, I know that God is all-knowing, all-powerful, sovereign. So that means He knows all about my sleeplessness, the panic I feel when my husband leaves for work in the morning and I am running on fumes. He knows that I feel like I cannot go on and He is completely aware of my helplessness.

He knows that I am desperately praying my daughter will sleep for at least another hour, even as I hear her start to stir. I am dreading the wake-up knock on her door (her routine for some odd reason is to knock and let me know she’s up) and praying that the Baby at least will stay down for more than a fifteen minute nap.

They say the Joy of the Lord is our strength and I think I can get that on a subconscious level. However, when every muscle and joint in my body is screaming at me to sleep so it can refresh itself, I find myself struggling to hold on to joy. It’s a handful of water that seeps out through my fingers as I race to catch every precious drop, knowing it is futile.

For me anyway.

It’s not the Joy of the LORD for no reason is it? So Lord, I am weary and wilting, my limits pressed to the breaking. If Your Joy is my strength, then that means I have nothing to do with it and I NEED you to infuse me with You. Your energy, Your Spirit, Your refreshment…Your Joy.