"The steadfast of mind You will keep in perfect peace, Because he trusts in You."
So much has happened this week in the world. Sometimes I look down at my little crew and I
can barely breathe out a thank you for the abundance in my heart, and in the tiny little bubble world in which I love to envelope myself and snuggle down.
"You hem me in behind and before,and you lay your hand upon me.
Such knowledge is too wonderful for me,
too lofty for me to attain."
I was reading a devotional this morning that mentioned that we should make our homes inviting and pretty, and especially our dining room tables, and at that very moment I looked over at our stained and beat up Ikea table with the leg that is bent and sagging, and the broken chairs around it and I laughed out loud. But I didn't feel sad.
Not even a little bit sad.
What does make me sad? Toddler size flip-flops on the floor by the door. Catching a glimpse of them out of the corner of my eye at the same moment that I was telling JT about the ISIS attacks on Paris. Wondering if the little feet that fit into them will turn into big feet that fit into boots and march into the terror of war someday.
Wondering what little feet of wandering refugee children would fit into them.
I don't know.
We sang this part of this song over and over again on Sunday. I sang with my eyes closed. All of my children stayed in childcare the whole time. JT wasn't able to come to church this week, I sat beside people I didn't know, but who were not strangers.
I sang those words over and over again, and I meant them, and I felt His smile upon me.
Some people get annoyed at the way praise songs repeat themselves over and over again, but whenever I repeat things to God over and over, I think of that verse in Revelation that talks about the creatures who spend eternity saying: "Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord God Almighty: Who was, and is, and is to come."
And maybe that sounds boring, but only if you don't know what it is to feel God's presence. To bask in it. It is all consuming.
It is not boring.
I wanted a 10 year plan. Heck, I wanted the 5 minute plan. I have known from a very young age that we are guaranteed nothing more than the breath we have today. We are guaranteed nothing more than the moment we have today to kiss the top of sparse blond heads, to endure a kick in the gut from the 4 year old whose love is so painful, to listen one last time to the 7 year old regale you with details of his Lego Ninjago book.
It's why the evil in the world around me really doesn't surprise me, and can't surprise me. We are all desperate sinners. But for the grace of God where would I be? The stains of sin still on my hands. I am weak, I am fallible.
What an incredible feeling that is. Like suddenly sprouting wings and soaring up over this great big mess that our world has become. The way your heart drops into your throat, but it's not fear exactly. It's...thrill.
And that's how I've been feeling this week. And what I have been wishing I was better at sharing with the world. It's not fair to keep it to myself. It's not right. It is more blood on my hands.
This world is so, so messed up, but we don't have to be afraid of it. We have to be bold. We have to step out into it, we have to let ourselves be used up entirely.
But what we do with them will.
I will pray for a bigger vision, a bigger impact, but mostly I will live fully in connection with God in the now.
The poet Emily Dickinson said "forever is composed of nows."
My only opportunity to impact the future is today....is right now where God has placed me.
I love this. I want to be the mustard seed that dies today, that breaks open to form a great tree that maybe I will not even get to see in this world.
I want to be a caterpillar that braves the gooey nothingness stage in order to become something beautiful.
He told me the other day that the verse they were learning at church was Proverbs 31:8-9
"Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves,
for the rights of all who are destitute.
Speak up and judge fairly;
defend the rights of the poor and needy."
I told him that this was one of my favorite verses, the verse that I have always considered my life verse as a nurse.
I loved the way he suddenly became shy, looking at his shoes before his eyes met mine again and he said quietly: "it's my favorite verse in the Bible too."
Aquaman doesn't just say stuff like that. He doesn't just agree with you to be agreeable. In fact, I would say it is hard for him to admit that he likes something when someone else says they like it too....yes, he is that ornery.
But that makes it mean more when he does.
And so we will continue to walk our roads of uncertainty this week.