Tuesday, November 19, 2013

this past week... and my weakness

*I started writing this last week but just couldn’t finish till now. So as you see me refer to “yesterday” I was talking about Sunday Nov 10th.*
My Miah is amazing! Our God is amazing! Yesterday was a day full of emotion, encouragement, conviction, grief, joy, and overall just exhausting. Leading up to yesterday had been days packed full of activity and responsibility and we just kept praying for grace and strength for each day. God carried us through!
The service yesterday at church was led by the youth. My Miah is currently the volunteer youth leader and he has been serving them so well in that role. The youth helped as greeters, led worship, prayed, gave testimonies, took up the offering, did special music, ran sound… and were simply wonderful! Jeremiah gave a short sermon at the end that was very difficult for him to share, but had such an impact on so many, including us! It was very emotional as he referenced Brody, and looked at me saying things like, “You have no idea how hard it is to look into that beautiful face and see her heart breaking…” He had us all crying through it, but not just because of our sorrow. His main point is that we have no excuse for not submitting to and serving God. We’re so good at making them though. “You don’t know what I’m going through, you don’t know what he/she did to me, I’m too tired, I served my time and now it’s someone else’s turn, it’s my day off…” Christ is our perfect example in that, “‘He committed no sin, and no deceit was found in his mouth.’ When they hurled their insults at him, he did not retaliate; when he suffered, he made no threats. Instead, he entrusted himself to him who judges justly.  ‘He himself bore our sins’ in his body on the cross, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; ‘by his wounds you have been healed.’” I Peter 2:22-24.  In order to submit to Christ and one another, we have to surrender our will.  I had to say, I surrender my will that Brody would be healed physically and come with us.  At the end he played “Surrender” by Lincoln Brewster. A song I had never heard till after our diagnosis, and I can’t listen to it without hot tears stinging my cheeks.
I have to re-surrender every day. So many days I feel like saying, “it’s not fair and I quit”. Last Wednesday I did that for a while. I spent nearly the whole day on the couch crying off and on. In part I think my body needed the rest and break from the business. However, I also gave in to the sorrow and toyed with bitterness. Every Wednesday is hard since we learned Brody’s diagnosis on a Wednesday, but that particular week I allowed my heart and mind to simmer in the pot of self-pity. Little bubbles of anger, despair, depression, stubborn bitterness, and the kind of sorrow that makes you shut down kept rising to the surface. I couldn’t even load the dishwasher or put the wet clothes in the dryer. I wanted to cancel the piano lesson I do before Awana and stay home from church. When Miah came home he hugged me and asked what was wrong. I just shrugged my shoulders and said I was sad and tired of being sad. He had to get going but offered to cover for me at church. I said no, I’d figure something out. By nothing less than an act of God, I got up, washed my face, got dressed, grabbed a bite to eat, and headed to the piano lesson. God gave me strength and grace to get through that half hour. Then I prepared for Awana and He gave me grace for the next step, and the next. Before I knew it I had fulfilled my normal responsibilities and prepared a lot for the upcoming Sundays. As I worked in the sound room preparing cues for the song set the next Sunday I was like a fly on the wall for the K-1st grade counsel time. Kristin did a wonderful job talking about heaven to these precious little ones. As I typed, edited, and chose pretty fall backgrounds for the lyrics of upcoming songs, I couldn’t help but let my heart soften as I thought of heaven and how Christ has provided the way. I was reminded that our Brody will get to go straight there and live in the presence of Jesus, free from the sorrow of this world. I have to will myself to focus on that truth.
There are days that feel “normal”. I get busy with my four little jobs, work around the house, run errands, etc. I feel joy, I laugh, I enjoy the little things. Then there are moments that take me by surprise and I cry yet again. I’ve learned to not be too surprised by that sudden surge of pain when I thought I was “fine”.  I’ve also learned that I can worship in all circumstances and all emotions. I’m allowed to feel sorrow while choosing to still trust Him. As Angie Smith explains so beautifully in her book, “I Will Carry You”, there is a sacred dance of grief and joy.

God grant me the strength for this day. Allow me to feel joy as I think of you and our true home in heaven. Help me to rest in your peace that surpasses all understanding. Thank you for your Word that is living and relevant. Thank you for providing encouragement through my fellow believers. Let my life, and Brody’s, glorify You today! 

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