Wednesday, July 25, 2012

He Grabbed Me Up

When I looked at the calendar yesterday morning the first thought that went through my mind was, "It's was four months ago today we buried Mama."

My eyes began to sting and my nose began to burn.  Before I realized it my gown was wet and snot was running where I had cried so hard.  Not a pretty sight, but it's an all too familiar one.

Today is week 17.  I still don't understand how my heart can hurt as if this is the Wednesday she died, yet also feel like it's been years since I last heard her voice.

It still doesn't seem real, but the overwhelming pain in my heart reminds me it's true.  She's gone.  Forever.

The pain has not lessened.  My heart still hurts to the core of my being, and is as raw as the day it happened.  Tears constantly hinge on the edge of my eyes just waiting to fall at any moment.  I would say I handled it better some days than others, but that would be a lie.  The truth is, I can't handle it at all.  The pain is way too intense, and my heart is so heavy.

I'm also struggling with loneliness.  A loneliness that at times becomes all encompassing.  I know that sounds weird.  I am surrounded by people who love me, but even though I know that is truth, I feel all alone.

In the first few weeks following my mom's death, people were constantly asking what they could do to help.  Nathan carried in stacks of cards from the mailbox every day.  My phone was either ringing or alerting me to a text message every few minutes.  I would open my email or Facebook account and find messages from friends full of promises to be there for me.  The oath my family took to stay close to each other, to get together more often seems to have already been broken.

Where did everyone go?

Now, I know all I have to do is pick up my phone and dial any of many numbers and the person on the other end would come running.  I know that I have many ... many ... friends who would do whatever they could to ease the pain.  I know this to be true because it's happened time and time again.

But it doesn't always feel true.

When I wonder where everyone went, I'm also including the Lord.  He has promised to never leave me.  Never.  I often feel as if He has left though.  Left me in this awful pit of pain I can't seem to get out of.

But then I think of Peter and how when he took his eyes off Jesus he began to sink.

Peter said to Him, “Lord, if it is You, command me to come to You on the water.” And He said, “Come!” And Peter got out of the boat, and walked on the water and came toward Jesus. But seeing the wind, he became frightened, and beginning to sink, he cried out, “Lord, save me!”  Immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and took hold of him, and said to him, You of little faith, why did you doubt?” ~ Matthew 14:28-31

My faith is little.  My faith is so frail.  I hate admitting that, but it's true.  If I'm going to be completely honest, my faith sometimes even comes with conditions.

Lord, as long as You keep showing me I can trust You, I will.

This morning I was reading the story of the man who brought his son, who was mute and suffering with convulsions, to Jesus asking Him to heal him.

And one of the crowd answered Him, “Teacher, I brought You my son, possessed with a spirit which makes him mute; and whenever it seizes him, it slams himto the ground and he foams at the mouth, and grinds his teeth and stiffens out. I told Your disciples to cast it out, and they could not do it.”  And He answered them and said, “O unbelieving generation, how long shall I be with you? How long shall I put up with you? Bring him to Me!”  They brought the boy to Him. When he saw Him, immediately the spirit threw him into a convulsion, and falling to the ground, he began rolling around and foaming at the mouth.  And He asked his father, “How long has this been happening to him?” And he said, “From childhood.  It has often thrown him both into the fire and into the water to destroy him. But if You can do anything, take pity on us and help us!”  And Jesus said to him, “ ‘If You can?’ All things are possible to him who believes.”  Immediately the boy’s father cried out and said, “I do believe; help my unbelief.”  When Jesus saw that a crowd was rapidly gathering, He rebuked the unclean spirit, saying to it, “You deaf and mute spirit, I command you, come out of him and do not enter him again.”  After crying out and throwing him into terrible convulsions, it came out; and the boy became so much like a corpse that most of them said, “He is dead!”  But Jesus took him by the hand and raised him; and he got up. When He came into the house, His disciples began questioning Him privately, “Why could we not drive it out?”  And He said to them, “This kind cannot come out by anything but prayer.” ~ Mark 9:17-29

Lord, I do believe, help my unbelief.  I know it's not "if" You can heal my brokenness, but "when will You".  I do trust You, but Your not doing this my way.  I don't like Your way.

That's what it comes down to.  I don't like the way God is carrying me through this pain.  It still hurts too much, and I want my heart healed now; well, actually yesterday would have worked better for me.

If it weren't for the Lord's boundless grace, I wouldn't be able to get through the next moment.  I'm not kidding when I say the pain is way too much to handle.  I can't do it.  I can't just pull myself up by my boot straps, wipe away the tears and march forward.  I can't even take my next step.  Putting one foot in front of the other is completely impossible without Him.

Where did everyone go?

I am all you need, Robin.  My grace is sufficient, and My mercy is never ending.  I haven't left.  I'm still right here, but you have taken your eyes off of Me.  When you do that, you are going to sink into the pain.

I like how The Message translates Matthew 14:31 ...

Jesus didn't hesitate. He reached down and grabbed his hand. Then he said, "Faint-heart, what got into you?"

Jesus didn't hesitate to grab me up this morning, hold me in His arms and remind me He hasn't left me.  My eyes must stay fixed on Him.  In His time, He will heal my brokenness ... He's even going to heal my broken body.

And where are all of those people who made promises to me?

Well, they are just a phone call away.  But they can't give me all I need, only Jesus can do that.

Jesus has stretched out His hand, took hold of me and asked me what got into me that I would doubt Him.

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever. ~ Hebrews 13:8

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