Yesterday morning I opened my Facebook to find a message in it that blew me away. It was from one of Brian’s childhood friends, Tish, and I have found a sweet, long-distance friendship with her over the years of Brian’s and my marriage. She has always been a source of encouragement to me, and y’all, I just have to share her words with you, too (with her permission, of course).
Thinking of you and of the struggle to feel safe in faith when the scary possibilities and real dangers press so close this morning. Crafting awkward parables in my head while watching my baby sleep. Everybody is trusting in their sleep. But it’s watching her start to wake that feels instructive and a bit miraculous.
We think of wakefulness as beginning when we open our eyes: that’s how we assess our surroundings and decide what to do next. Is it light out, or still dark? Is there danger here, or is all quiet? Did some external disruption stir me, or was I dreaming? And, of course, I’m hungry; is it time to start the coffee/make a sandwich?
For Tatha, for babies, it doesn’t start with the eyes. There’s nothing to see that changes where she is or what she needs/is able to do: she wakes hungry, and starts turning her head back and forth, moving her lips, flailing her hands softly to find what she’s looking for. There’s no “if,” no “is it there?” She doesn’t wonder if the milk will come, doesn’t fear its absence, doesn’t worry. Her only question is where is it exactly–from which direction is it coming? Because it always comes. She’s loved and cherished, and the nourishment she needs is right there; it may take a little feeling-about for, but it’s there. It’s always there.
It was at this point I became a huge, sobbing mess (and let me tell y’all, a hoarse sobbing mess really is a ridiculous sound).
This is so true, so beautiful, and so what I needed to hear as I struggle to believe, to fight against Satan’s lies that God is not FOR me, that I couldn’t really be His, that the Valley of the Shadow of Death only leads to death and not hope.
There. Is. No. “If.”
My God is always here, and just because I can’t necessarily “see” Him doesn’t mean He’s not there or not caring or not loving or not providing. He always comes and the milk of His provision isn’t dependent on me.
Lord, I believe. Help my unbelief.
Tish told me she was sure I could make something affirming and reassuring out of this. She called me a word-gifted woman.
No, it is Tish who is the wordsmith this morning. The one I needed. The one He provided.
She is not the only one. Many of you have sent me truth, have held my hand, have prayed over me and over us, have shared your heart and your words, have gone to battle with and for us.
You are the wordsmiths I need.
Thank you. All of you.
“But the love, the love, the love
It was not the cheapest kind
It was rich as, rich as, rich as ,rich as, rich as
Any you could ever find”
Y’all, we are so very rich.