Sunday, February 24, 2013

Slings and arrows

It never ceases to amaze me how quickly I forget and need to re-learn lessons I thought I've already taken and gotten a passing grade on.

Lesson 1: God is far better able to handle things than I am.
Lesson 2: After a victory comes a period of testing.
Lesson 3: Letting go is still the best way to handle both.

After the MRI miracle (that's a link to my previous post) - our daughter called the specialist the following morning to book a consultation to discuss the results. They booked it for March 8 - just a little over 2 weeks from the day she called. We felt indeed blessed. 

Doubly so when the surgeon's office called her the FOLLOWING morning to say that they had received the results of the MRI and that they wanted to see her THAT DAY to discuss. Less than 2 days after the MRI!!

The discussion ended with him writing a requisition for surgery and putting on the requisition to place her on the cancellation list - in other words, the sooner this surgery happens (see my post about this on Get Unwrapped!) the better! 

WELL. I forgot lesson 2. 

Flushed with victory, I felt confident enough this morning to invite my daughter to a special service at church this morning led by the children. We enjoy these services because the kids don't just "perform," they MINISTER; they LEAD. Of course it's a bittersweet thing for me because it's something we feel that we will never be able to experience as parents, to have our kids involved in such things. Water under the bridge, too much water under the bridge to go into right now. Suffice to say that their experience of the church is far less stellar than we would have liked. Part of that is our fault in our insistence on rules and such, but another part is the fact that as much as WE were about rules growing up, the church atmosphere was even more so, and they almost always felt shunned by the people who were supposed to love and nurture them. 

Anyway, I thought she might enjoy seeing the kids in charge for a change; they really are wonderful when they lead the service. 

She turned me down flat. Thinking she might be doing so because of how she feels every time she goes to our church (crowded, judged, etc.) I suggested she catch it on UStream.

She made a face - clearly disgusted. "It's about ... God ... isn't it." The way she looked when she said His Name ... like it was the most distasteful thing she'd ever had to say ... cut me to the quick. 

"I ... see your point," I said to her, and walked away numbly - as if I'd been shot - through my soul - with an arrow: one that pierced straight through and that was still there, sticking out at both ends. 

I managed to make it to our bedroom and close the door before the grief overwhelmed me. Wave upon wave of remorse, shame, and sadness washed over the inside of me; I felt like a total and complete failure as a Christian, and as a mother.

My husband, my very best friend in the whole world, held me, let me sob, and then "talked me down." He reminded me of a couple of things I'd already learned ... but forgotten to remember in my sadness and hurt. Lessons one through three, above, to be exact. Plus a number of other things that had to do with letting go and trusting God, that it wasn't my job to rescue her, that she needed to come to Him on her own and I'd spent too much time (pre-recovery) trying to make it happen already (and all that did was have the opposite effect!!)  Without saying it, he reminded me that the Holy Spirit is the Holy Spirit; it's HIS job to bring people into a relationship with God, not mine

He let me pray all I could manage to pray (something like, 'Oh Gawwwwwd' - not very imaginative, but heart-felt!) He let me feel what I felt, and he helped me let go ... or start to ... and to trust God for the outcome. He did not judge me; he supported me and held me up when I couldn't hold myself up, and he turned my face toward the Source - until I found my Center again. 

"Two are better than one," the preacher wrote, "because they have a good reward for their labor. For if they fall, one will lift up the other ... and a threefold cord is not quickly broken." (Ecclesiastes 4:9-12)

Have I mentioned that (among other things) I'm so grateful that God in His wisdom and mercy, brought my husband and me together?

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