God Whispers

Thank God our newest addition, Flint, finally did arrive on Christmas Eve, 2015.  He is a total blessing and joy to our family.  Something about having new babies around makes me very reflective.  My heart feels full of things I could write here.IMG_5462

Today as my 2 littlest were napping, I took my lunch outside, left my phone and all reading material inside, and just sat and listened.  Have you ever noticed how the wind rushing through bare trees sounds so much like the ocean waves?  Have you seen how quickly light can change everything around you just because of a cloud blowing in front of the sun?  Have you watched a tall tree sway violently at its top but stay still and steady at its base?  These are all the things I treasured in my silently loud lunch today.  And in watching all this, God whispered to my heart.

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The way the wind roams freely and affects everything in its path – that is so much like God.  He does not change but He does indeed move.  That one thing breathed hope into my soul.  My changeless Rock, my wise and loving Father, is moving in this fallen world.  He is working all things together for the good of those who love Him (Rom.8:28).  He is finishing what He started (Phil. 1:6).  His truth has not changed but it is on the move.

The way the tall trees sway at the top but stay still at the bottom – that is me and God’s calling on my life as a Christ-follower in this world.  I am rooted deep in Him and those roots will not be severed because of His faithfulness.  The truth of His Word is what grows those roots deeper and deeper and makes me stronger and stronger.  But those roots are not meant to make the entire tree stuck in space like a statue.  Instead, the strength of the roots allows the tree to bend, sway, carry great weight, and even drop weight when branches break.  All this happens without damage to the roots but rather, because of the roots. Like the tree, I also am meant to sway – bend in serving others, put my own goals aside at times, listen to others, humbly learn, carry weight or burdens of others, drop weight or burdens not from God…all while staying firmly rooted in Him, because of Him.

God, thank you for your whispers of truth through all creation.  Help us to listen more.  Thank you for your truth and for being on the move in this world.  Grow my roots deeper in You and teach me to sway with beauty for your glory.  Amen

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Waiting…

Advent …what a season of waiting. It’s the time of preparing our hearts for the truth of God made man, Immanuel.  It’s the time of preparing our lives for what God’s living Presence with us truly means.  It’s the time of preparing our homes for Christmas and all the joys the season brings.  At our house this year, it’s also the time for preparing for our 4th child’s arrival, now 5 days overdue.

As this season of Advent has coincided with our own season of baby expecting, I’ve thought a lot about waiting.  I’ve thought about those in the Bible who were told of the Savior’s arrival hundreds of years before He came.  Many people in that time period died waiting to see a Savior… And they never saw Him with earthly eyes, yet many still hoped and expected.  In several Biblical accounts, those of faith waited well.  I’ve also thought about several people I now know who are waiting…waiting on that job, waiting on that test result, waiting for deliverance, waiting for restoration, waiting for healing, waiting, waiting, waiting.  And I’m right there too – waiting for labor, waiting for delivery, waiting for our son.

I’m just not sure I wait so well.  Each day overdue feels like an eternity, increasing the pain, anxiety, and discomfort of the situation…much like it feels for so many who wait in their own situations.  But the truth is that even if our eyes do not see the end come true, God is still faithful.  Abraham, Moses, Job, Esther, Isaiah…they never saw their Savior, yet the Savior still came.   Their believing did not come through seeing.  A college friend of mine died last week from cancer, at 32 years of age, leaving a husband and 3 young girls behind.  It’s an earthly tragedy too great for words.  And with our earthly eyes, it seems that prayers for her healing were not answered.  Yet as her faithful family believes, their prayers for healing were answered in her home-going to perfect Heaven to see perfect Jesus where she has been made perfect in Him.  Again, believing does not come through seeing, and that truth changes the way we wait.

What if we believed that God’s promises to us were already done?  What if, in the midst of waiting, we praised Him for the deliverance that is already finished for us, whether our earthly eyes see it or not?  What if we claimed the truth of God’s goodness toward us and believed that even right here, in the midst of turmoil and pain, He is acting out His good intentions toward us?  Just, what if?

A wise woman once told me that waiting is the most active time of our spiritual life – for it is then that we continue to go back and go back and go back to God, until He calms and assures us. Here are my current verses for our waiting period…”Rejoice in the Lord always; again, I will say rejoice.” (Phil. 4:4) In my time of pain and anxiety, I say aloud, “I rejoice in this exact thing.  You are faithful God.”   I also love Phil. 4:5-7…”The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.  And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”  This verse speaks of the repetition of going back to God.  He is close and because He is close, we don’t have to be anxious.  And He even knows that we still be anxious, so when we are, He has given us prayer and praise which ushers in peace that we cannot understand.  And that peace acts as a guardian to our very hearts.

Praying this guarding, calming. and heavenly peace for all of you who wait.   Praying that the reality of Christ’s constant presence changes your faith, your mind, and your soul this Christmas.

Waiting in hope,

Betsy

Healthy Pumpkin Muffins

Happy first day of Fall!  I’m so excited it’s finally here!    I’m dreaming of boots, all things pumpkin, cozy sweaters, hot drinks, and fireside chats in our backyard. Not to mention the fact that my baby bump is thrilled for cooler temps.  In honor of Fall’s reappearance, I made pumpkin muffins / cupcakes today.  Here’s the super easy and healthful recipe…

Ingredients and Preparation:

1 3/4 Cups White Whole Wheat Flour

2/3 Cup Brown Sugar or Coconut Sugar

1 T. Baking Powder

1/2 t. Salt

1 1/2 t. Cinnamon

1/2 t. Ginger

1/2 t. Nutmeg (freshly grated is extra yummy)

1 15 oz can Pumpkin Puree

1/2 cup Milk

1/2 cup Unsweetened Applesauce

1 egg

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line or grease 12 muffin tins. Mix all the dry ingredients together in a large bowl. Mix all the wet ingredients together in a separate bowl, making sure to fully incorporate the egg.  Then pour wet ingredients into dry ingredients and stir together.  Using a small ice cream scoop, fill the muffin cups to the top with batter. Bake for 20-24 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.  These are wonderful by themselves (more hearty than sweet) but if you really want to take them over the edge, add the cream cheese icing. Mmm-mmm.

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Icing Ingredients and Preparation:

8 oz. softened Cream Cheese

4 T. softened Butter

2 heaping cups of Powdered Sugar

1 t. Vanilla

Cream together the softened cream cheese and butter. Add in the powdered sugar 1/2 cup at a time, beating after each addition.  Cream in the vanilla extract and beat on high for about another minute to get the icing nice and fluffy.  Spread on cooled (or slightly warm) muffins.

Recipe Alternatives:

For a more decadent treat, replace the white whole wheat flour with all-purpose flour.  Use 1 full cup of brown or white sugar.  Replace the applesauce with oil or melted butter.  I have not tried this yet but I’m sure it would take the taste from a muffin to a cupcake.

ENJOY and HAPPY FALL!

Surprise Baby

There is just nothing like walking with Lord.  His plans so often surprise, stretch, interrupt, and change me in the best of ways.  Here is His latest surprise to us – our family is expecting our 4th child!  We are very excited and have already felt our hearts expand in ways we could have never imagined.  The story of this little one is so amazing to us that I just have to share it here.  (Warning – it does contain some girly details, so men, you may want to have your lady summarize for you!)

Baby #4 at 13 weeks.

Baby #4 at 13 weeks.

After much conversation, Andrew and I decided about a year ago that we were done having kids, feeling very thankful for the 3 we’ve been given.  We gave away pretty much all of our baby stuff and began planning our future as a family of 5.  After my concussion last Fall, we were told I could not have more kids because my female cycle was severely disrupted from the injury.  And if future kids were a desire, it would definitely not happen for a while.  He said it was not abnormal for this to happen since hormones are controlled by the brain. It would just take time for things to hopefully return to normal.  Andrew and I discussed how devastating that news would have been if we didn’t have our 3 kiddos already and praised God for His timing of my injury.

At 6 month post-concussion, things in this area were still far from normal.  On a Monday in March, I returned to my Doctor for a check-up.  Without going into too much detail, he concluded through my check-up that I had not ovulated since my injury.  He put me on one month of birth control to see how my body would respond.  Now those who know me, know that I’m kind of anti-medicine.  I talked about this with my Doctor and it seemed to us that this was almost a necessary, last-ditch effort.  So from Monday until Thursday, I agonized about taking the medicine.  I did not want to do it but I also was tired of feeling the symptoms of super messed up hormones.  So on Thursday night, I took the first pill and went to bed.

That night was one of the most fitful nights of my life.  I slept horribly.  I had terrible nightmares.  I woke repeatedly with a feeling that something wasn’t right.  In the morning, I finally got out of bed, praying for the Lord to help me interpret and recover from the night.  Still with the strong message that something wasn’t right, I decided to take a pregnancy test.  I knew there was no possible way I could be pregnant but it was something I needed to check off my list just to ease my mind.  Surprisingly, I already had one at home, took it, and even more surprisingly – it was positive!  In disbelief, I went to tell Andrew and he totally thought I was losing my mind.  In his normal, gentle way, he assured me that there was no way I could be pregnant and the test was probably a weird result of all that my body had been through over the past months.

So I called the Doctor that Friday morning, and they asked me to come in (for what would make the 2nd time that week).  At my appointment, the result was confirmed that I was indeed expecting again!  My Doctor, who knew my history well, even asked in wonder, “How did this happen?”  A quick ultrasound gave us an estimated due date (December 2015).  From the first second of knowing about this child, he or she was both welcome and wanted.  It just took us a little bit to adjust to the shock.  We look back at ourselves and laugh at how we were for those first few days.  Andrew kept sending me texts that he was nauseous and couldn’t focus and I was pretty much in the same boat.  I’m kind of laughing at us even as I type this!

So, this is our concussion baby… a child who probably wouldn’t have come without this giant disruption in my body’s cycle, a child given to us against all odds.  We pray that this baby is healthy and that the pregnancy continues uncomplicated.  As we pray, we also know that God is in control with His giant, baffling (to my human mind) plan and beg for the grace to rest and trust in Him.

It’s funny how some of life’s hardest things can result in some of life’s most beautiful things.  Only God could do that.

Balance

If life is about finding balance, then I have a long way to go. Maybe it’s because I stink at balance, or maybe it’s because my life is constantly changing, or maybe it’s because finding balance is an actual impossibility. I’ve read many an article via Pinterest telling me how to balance my house cleaning routine or meal planning or finances. But nothing yet has actually told me how to balance a life that involves 3 children, 1 husband, 5 demanding schedules, being a full-time mom while also working 2 part time jobs, cooking meals that are tasty yet safe for our family’s food allergies, keeping the house clean and laundry done, cultivating friendships and other relationships, and tending to my own personal needs. When I look at that list, “balance” seems like a laughable goal.

Thankfully, God is teaching me one simple truth that is slowly and steadily working it’s way into every crevice of my being. There IS an important balance to be found in life, and that is the balance between letting go and holding on.IMG_4071

In every area of my life, and in my life as a whole, I have choices of what to let go of and what to hold on to. Will I let go of my selfishness and hold on to serving others in love and joy? Will I let go of my own expectations and hold on to the moment at hand? Will I let go of past regrets and hold on to the truth of righteousness in Jesus? Will I let go of my will and hold on to God’s? Recent introspection reveals that I’ve often chosen wrongly, holding on to what needs to be let go. I choose to let go of hope and hold on to resentment. I choose to let go of truth and hold on to lies. I choose to let go discipline and hold on to ease. The list could go on and on. How grateful I am for our Counselor, the Holy Spirit, who reveals His thoughts to us in love, spurring us on toward His likeness. IMG_3962

I am convinced that I will never be an example of a balanced life, nor do I necessarily even aspire to it. I do however want to learn this one lesson really well. I want to be one who chooses wisely of what to hold on to and what to let go. And in that choosing, I hope to be one who can love and live with balanced, honest, unbound sincerity.

Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil. Cling to what is good.” Romans 12:9

Anger’s Wall

(Have you ever replied to a text or email in your head, but not actually replied in real life?  I am the world’s worst at that.  Lately, I’ve been blogging like that too.  There are so many blog posts in my head that haven’t actually been penned in real life!  Hopefully that changes today!)

Recently, our son disobeyed and got into some trouble with us.  Like many children, he did not enjoy the consequences of his choice and got very angry – I’m talking red-faced, throwing- things, door-slamming angry.  My heart hurt for him in that moment because it seemed like he didn’t understand the love behind the lesson.  As I told him, if I didn’t love him, I’d let him get away with disobedience.  But since I do love him and I know that disobedience has hurtful consequences in life, I want him to learn to desire and love obedience.   As I watched him express his anger in a variety of ways over a generous time period, I also tried to love on him.  I reached out to hug him, I attempted to rub his back, I sat beside him, but each one of my efforts was met with recoil and resistance.

In that moment, it was like God was saying to me, “See the wall that anger builds?  Love cannot get through when anger builds a wall. Anger blocks love.”  I started thinking about that and realized it’s truth.  I can think of times when I was angry and my husband was the one trying to love on me.  I wasn’t even mad at him but I reacted just like our son, I recoiled and resisted.  How many times have I missed someone’s love or even worse, have I missed God’s love because of anger?

“ANGER BLOCKS LOVE.”

Google defines anger as “a strong feeling of annoyance, displeasure, or hostility”.  I think we can all admit to feeling this at some point in our life. Sometimes anger begins as an irritation which slowly builds into an intolerance or distaste for someone or something. Sometimes there are situations in life that are so tragic, so shocking, so damaging, that anger quickly builds up in a powerful and unexpected way. I’ve experienced both kinds of anger and often, before I know it, anger overflows from my life in unexpected and inappropriate places.  Perhaps the long drive-through experience made me lose my cool, or the kids spilling their milk through me into a fit –  I become too easily angered.

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So what’s a girl to do?  Great question.  Perhaps the best first step is just recognizing the wall of anger in you and asking God to tear it down (something I’ve recently asked God to do in me).  Here’s one super motivating reason for doing that… Ephesians 4:26-27, “In your anger do not sin”: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, and do not give the devil a foothold.”  WHAT?  Anger that is held onto gives the devil a foothold?  That is a risk not worth taking, no matter how extreme or justified your anger. (Also, as a side note, this verse implies that there IS a way to be angry without sin.  Anger in itself is not a sin; the way we handle anger is usually where things go wrong.  I’m not sure if I am yet mature enough to be angry without sin, but how I desire to be!)

Second, when we ask God to remove something in our life, remember to ask Him to replace it with His Spirit and goodness.  Here’s a way to begin praying. James 1:19-20 says,  “ My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires.” So after we ask Him to tear down our anger wall, we ask Him to build in us a spirit that is quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to become angry.  In my recent experience with this lesson (and with so many spiritual battles), I’ve noticed that change usually is a battle.  For example, when I go through the process of forgiving someone, I’m not usually all the sudden thrilled to be with them.  I find that I have to battle sin within me time and time again until God replaces my sin feelings with godly ones. The same is true with anger. When we are stimulated to anger, we go to battle.  We ask God time and time again to break it down and in its place, build up a spirit of grace, gentleness, and godliness.  He is faithful and will do it.

Are you feeling unloved lately?  Perhaps unnoticed anger is blocking love.  Are you easily angered in the most insignificant areas?  Ask the Holy Spirit of God to explore and reveal to you the root.  Wherever a weedy root is removed, He is faithful to grow a fruitful plant in soil desiring Him.  Anyone ready to do some digging with me?  The harvest of gentleness, mercy, grace, and love await.

 

Light

Today is my 4 month anniversary of hitting my head.  I know it seems like a weird anniversary to celebrate, but to me, it feels like something that I never want to forget.  4 months ago, I had absolutely no idea that my life would take such an unexpectedly crazy turn… but God knew from the beginning of time.  I am thankful to say that I am finally feeling pretty much back to normal.  Last week, as I was putting our son, Drew, to bed, he said, “Mom, you finally have your personality back.”  My husband echoed those words yesterday, noticing that it felt like he had me back again.  I cannot even tell you how sweet those words are to my ears.  There were many moments over the past 124 days when I feared I would stay a shell of myself forever.  I am truly beyond grateful to God for his healing.

I say that I’m “pretty much” back to normal because I don’t think I’ll really ever be the same as I was pre-concussion.  After I hit my head, it was as if the lights went off in my life.  It felt like sitting in a theatre after a grand show when suddenly all the people are gone, the music stops, the lights go off, and you are left alone in a pitch black, silent, unfamiliar place.  In that darkness and silence, your eyes can discern the dimmest light and your ears begin to hear the tiniest of sounds.  God had my attention in a way that absolutely could not have happened without the darkness.   And He filled my soul with a light that I would not have known without the darkness.  IMG_0638

 

God once again reminded me that He is the meticulous caretaker of my soul. There is no trial or hardship that touches me that has not first been sifted through His loving hands.  The physical health of my body is of some value but the health of my soul is of utmost importance.  And if trial brings a healthier soul, my God will lovingly send it my way.  “For physical training is of some value but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come.” (1 Timothy 4:8) How I thank God for training me for this life AND for the life to come through His sovereign care and plan.  For those of you going through hardship (and I know there are many, and many with trials much worse than mine),  dare to see this hardship as an arrow of love from our Lord.  Dare to trust Him as your meticulous Soul Gardener.  Let the warmth of His light draw your face and your heart upward, looking beyond this life and into the life to come.  I really believe that when we get there, all of this will make sense and we will want nothing else but to fall at His feet in worship.  But for now, when you’re alone in silence and darkness…perk up your ears, search for the Light – you are never alone.  Our Jesus is right there beside you.

 

Bedtime Conversations

Bedtime at our house can be either the grumpiest or the sweetest time of our day. We are all usually exhausted and my parent time sheet feels expired, but sometimes, even with all that, a little magic happens. There is just something about being together with your little one, almost nose to nose, and hearing their soul spill out. Tonight was one of those nights and I had to write about it before it’s a lost memory.  I’m going to do my best to keep it as word for word as I can remember! (And both of these conversations happened one-on-one.)

 

Drew: Mom, I wish there was no sin and no stomach bugs in this world.

Me: Me too buddy.

Drew: In heaven, there won’t be any of that.  It’s all here because of you know who, (makes a stinky face) Adam and Eve…but not really them, actually the snake.  Mom, why didn’t God give them a second chance?

Me: Well He did.  God said that they could eat of any tree of all the millions of trees in their garden but if they ate of the one tree, they would die. What happened when they ate the fruit from the one tree? Did they die?

Drew: No.

Me: No, God showed them grace.  He let them live.  They didn’t get to live in the garden any more but they did not die.  God gave them a second chance.

Drew: God is the nicest guy ever….(pensive look)…how did He get created?

Me: That’s a great question!  He wasn’t created.  He is uncreated because He is the Creator.  He has just always been there.

Drew: My mind can’t even get that.

Me: (laughing) Well, I can tell you it doesn’t get any easier to understand when you’re a grown-up.  My mind can’t get it either!

Drew: But in heaven we’ll get it.

Me: Yes we will.

 

Sleeping superheroes

Sleeping superheroes

 

Caleb: When am I going to die?

Me:  (with slight panic) I don’t know bud….what’s on your mind?

Caleb: I just really want to go to heaven.  Don’t you?

Me: Yes!  What makes you want to go to heaven?

Caleb: I just really want to see what God looks like.  I’ve never seen Him before.

Me:  I’ve never seen Him before either but..,

Caleb (interrupts): I’ve heard Him.

Me: Yes, we can hear Him and we can see what He does.

Caleb: Like what?

Me: Like heal our boo-boos, and give us food and change us into more loving people.

Caleb: And plant trees.

Me: Yep.

Caleb: I just wiped a booger on your shirt.

Me: (Gags, giggles, tickles…)

 

I write this to remind myself (and anyone else who needs to hear it) that in spite of all my shortcomings and struggles as a parent, God is at work in our home.  He is present because He is faithful.  He alone knows how our kids will “turn out” and I trust HIM for that.  Rest easy my friends.  He is with us.

Strange Gifts

It’s hard to believe that it has been over 7 weeks since I hit my head and got this life-altering concussion.  Last week, I had an appointment at the neurologist to get the results of my EEG.  Praise God, my EEG was great.  There is no permanent brain damage.  However,  he did say that he expected it to be 2-3 more months before I felt back to normal.  Even with the great results from my EEG, this news was really discouraging to me.  I’m just now writing about it because I think I’m just now getting my head wrapped around that.(*Medical side note:  I have elected not to take the medicine prescribed to me through this process.  I’m very sensitive to meds and it is not worth the benefit to me.  I’m not sure if it has slowed my recovery or not but I just wanted to share that for those who have asked questions about medicine.) Thankfully, God has been changing my attitude of disappointment to thankfulness through the gift of perspective.  In the scheme of things, 2-3 months is really nothing.  And this giant pause from life has also revealed some strange gifts given to me.  Here’s a list of a few…

1. the gift of seeing our children’s strength

Our kids’ lives have been wildly interrupted over the last few weeks.  They’ve been shuffled from place to place by a number of people.  They’ve eaten whatever they’ve been given. They’ve worn dirty clothes (repeatedly).  They’ve had more responsibility than ever before.  They’ve put themselves to bed.  It’s been crazy…but they have rocked it.  I’ve seen them be tough and tender, positive and encouraging, smart and strong.  As a mother, you hope every day that you are teaching your kids these traits, but at these young ages,  you rarely see them surface.  This experience has given me the gift of seeing those traits surface and stay a while.

One child was sent to the corner, and the other child joined and stayed for the duration of the punishment.  Talk about team players! Haha!

One child was sent to the corner, and the other child joined and stayed for the duration of the punishment. Talk about team players! Haha!

2. the gift of ministry

I have learned so much about how to minister and spread the love of Christ to others. Before this injury, a large portion of my ministry was public.  I sing on stage at our church; I lead a large group of young moms; I lead a book study;  I work on staff at our church, etc.  During this time of recovery, God has shown me the beauty of private ministry – the kind that no one knows about except for you and the other person.  We have been so loved.  Many people have not asked questions, they’ve just done what needed to be done.  We didn’t even talk about it they just did it…and it was so beautiful.  Also during this time, God has brought us new ways to love others.  He has given us opportunities to serve Him through serving people in new ways that no one else will ever know about…and again, it is so beautiful.  In a way, I feel like I’m actually starting to “get” real ministry for the first time.

 

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This little love bug ministered to me by unexpectedly sharing his kisses. That always makes a Mama feel better.

3. the gift of time

Being engaged in a private ministry means being available to sense and respond to need.  It means listening to the Holy Spirit of God when you feel that nudge to reach out to someone.  I have always had those nudges in my life but I have not always responded.  You know why?  Because I was too busy!  There was no time to write that note, or pray in earnest, or share a Bible verse, or cry with someone.  My busy schedule stole me from God’s intimate, personal, and precious work to souls. I cannot be all things to all people and I have no desire to do that.  But I can be God’s embrace of love to somebody who needs it, and I don’t want to miss that chance. What a gift this strange time has been if to teach me just this one thing.

4. the gift of watching life without me

One of the hardest things for me during the last 7 weeks was watching my life go on without me in it. I have experienced a grieving process because many things have felt like a great loss.  At the same time that I’ve felt thankful to all who stepped into my “normal” responsibilities, I’ve also felt deeply sad that I was gone.  This sounds dramatic, but it’s almost like seeing your life after your funeral.  Some folks are sad for you; some folks are actually glad that you’re gone, as if they’ve been waiting to take over for you; some folks are not affected at all; and to some, a certain few, you are irreplaceable.

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Many things take on a new perspective when you become a shadow in your own life.

This last “gift” has taken me the longest to see as a gift.  And I would be lying to say that I’m not still grieving some things.  But very few get to see their life without them in it.  Very few get to have the definition that comes along with this perspective.  Very few are forced to let go of the “important” to grasp hold of the eternal. For that, I am grateful.

Waiting on diamonds

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The last week has taught me that this recovery process is going to be full of ups and downs.  (That’s life, right?)  I had a great start to last week, only to end the week in a puddle of tears.  A friend (who is an ICU nurse) explained to me that the brain will make the body regress if the brain is not ready to heal.  That is exactly what I experienced last week.  I felt good in the beginning of the week and tried to get back into many aspects of my regular life but it must have been too soon.  I have definitely regressed.  Many things that should be simple are still so frustratingly hard.  I dropped an entire cake.  I’ve spilled countless drinks.  I’ve dropped and thus shattered 3 glasses.  I’m socially awkward.  I forget nearly everything.

Emotionally, it feels like I’m going through a bit of a grieving process.  I really miss my normal life.  In the last few weeks, I’ve met some well-meaning folks who have told me about their concussion or their child’s concussion, etc. who was back to normal after 3 days.  I really don’t know what to say when people tell me these stories.  I’m so glad that happened to them.  I’m intensely sad at times that is not my story… but there is nothing I can do about it.  Thank you to all of you who have been patient with me.  You have no idea what kind of gift you are giving me.

Today I read in Psalm 5,

Give ear to my words, O LORD; consider my groaning.  Give attention to the sound of my cry, my King and my God, for to You do I pray.

Then I journaled,

Lord, I may have never felt this vulnerable before in my life.  I’ve never felt like I needed Your shelter so much.  I’ve never desired a Protector so deeply but You are all these things.  I don’t have many words these days but I do have plenty of groans and cries. Thank you for hearing me and knowing the sounds of my cries. Just like You give a mother the ability to hear the difference in her baby’s pain cry, scared cry, tired cry, mad cry, You do that with me. I pray to a God who hears what I do not even say and that is so comforting.  Thank you Lord.

May you, my friend, be comforted by a God who hears the sound of your cries.  May you rejoice today in the mystery of God’s works.  May you see Him in your pain and loneliness.  May His face shine upon your tear-stained cheeks to turn your tears into diamonds.  

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