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Sunday, June 24, 2012

Unanswered Prayer

I am a magnet for four year old girls. We have been on a little vacation with my parents, and at the pool I seem to have constant companions who want to play with the twins. And they are all four year old girls. And my sweeties love it. And I cannot help but go there... to the what ifs.

A few hours before the accident Cameron had a bad feeling and we prayed Psalm 91 and asked for protection on our trip. An unanswered prayer. But what if God had answered us with a miracle? What if she were here with us?

I think back to another "what if." What if I had gotten pregnant again when I planned? The pinings for baby number two started when Makiah was barely one. My whole life I had been waiting for the day when I would have a rowdy house full of sweet little munchkins. Every month was a roller coaster of excited hoping and then a crash of disappointment when that little test was negative again. I remember purposely trying to turn my energy and focus on my time with Makiah. What if she was my only child? Then what a shame it would be to waste her one sweet childhood wishing for other babies that may never come.

Now I look back and see that if the Lord had given me what I so desperately thought I wanted- more children then- I would not have spent all of Makiah's short life being wrapped up in her. She was my little buddy and totally a mama's girl. We did everything together. Undistracted time with Makiah.   A blessing of unanswered prayer.

And the very miracle that I so desperately prayed for during those years found me this January... when I least expected it.  While I was busily nursing and caring for twin  eleven month olds, God  was giving me what I considered slight insanity.. an unrelenting desire to be pregnant again- against all common sense!  I started the process of infertility consultation with no idea whatsoever that our little miracle already had a heartbeat!   Just in time to help my broken heart feel the pulse of God's love still beating for me.

As I sit in the darkness riding home from  our trip, I think of how  so much of our understanding is darkened by our limited view... those few feet in front that the headlights may show us.  So much mystery that we cannot understand in the moment.  Unanswered prayers.  Miracles given without even a prayer uttered.   My husband and I mix our voices with the lyrics pulsing from our dashboard... "And Lord, unto You be all the glory..."

 And I see a little farther into the darkness.  The gifts and the pain of unanswered prayers are all for one thing.  His glory.

Hands on the bulging belly.  Eyes wet with the missing.  Lips curled up with the joy of the little one dancing deep inside.  And I sing it a little bit louder...

Unto You be all the glory.

My Romance by Christ for the Nations

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Crashing Waves

They seem to crash over me this week.  The waves.  Of grief.  My hubby told me once it was that way for him...  sorrow in waves.   My ears are filled with the sound of pounding on my heart’s shore.   

They won’t look at her picture or say her name anymore.  My babies.  They love to point to the grandparents’ pictures or call the name of their aunt “Lala” (aka Laura).  But they turn their heads now when I show them Makiah’s picture.  They used to imitate excitedly, “Kiah!”  Now they turn away with lips gone silent.  And inside I feel a desperate cry and stabbing pain.  A wish to right this wrong.

She isn’t real to them.  They have never seen her bouncing curls, felt her tickling touch, or heard her giggles.   She doesn’t come to visit.  Ever.   This mystery sister.   I know they are too young to understand, but that is not the point.  This is just the first of a hundred signs of the schism torn through our family… at least while we are here on earth.   And it feels like she never existed.  To them she didn’t.  Not in their life time. 

Do the living remember the dead they did not know?  We see the fingerprints of them all around, but truly life is about the living.  We are busy.  And the fleeting days are so full of things that are meaningless.  I try to think back to dilemmas of what to wear or eat or daily frustrations from 10 years ago… and I can’t remember them.  Those silly things are gone.  Whisked away by the swift broom of time.  As our lives will be.  What will I do that matters?  One day I will leave behind a picture of myself that will  grow dusty in someone’s attic while the living are busy about the business of life.  What will I do with the short time that is given me?  Will I leave behind more for my great, great grandchildren then a trunk of old journals and aging photos??? 

The questions swirl and the grief crashes and pounds… but now it’s time to get busy.  The dishes are calling.

 “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes?... But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well."
  Mathew 6:25 & 33

 For, “All people are like grass,
    and all their glory is like the flowers of the field;
the grass withers and the flowers fade, 
     but the word of the Lord endures forever.”
1 Peter 1:24-25

Saturday, June 2, 2012

The Extraordinary Ordinary

Babbling babies and muffin crumbs.  Sun glimpsing through rugged pecan trees.  Gentle breeze and soft, purring kitty.  Morning light stretches onto our porch.  And I am thankful.  Thankful that all five of us (baby number 4 included!) are sitting here in our normal groggy state.  Nothing new.  Nothing exciting.  And my heart is beating with thankfulness.

Yesterday we traveled home from visiting Cameron's parents.  Like we did that day.  We stopped at a mall for a short break.  Like we did that day... we had eaten in the food court, and Makiah and I played "I spy" while we waited for her Daddy to shop.  We made another quick stop to pick up something handed down for the new baby (thank you Melissa!!).  Like we did that day... the last time I touched Makiah was when we stopped to meet someone at a Mcdonald's to pick up a baby seat purchased from Craig's list.  When Cameron suggested we eat at Cracker Barrel (like we did that day!) I drew the line and had to confess my secret charting.  He hadn't noticed the similarities.  Or my inner churnings stuffed deep down where anxiety likes to grow.  I drove the last 2 hours, and I admit there were no sighs of relief until we were in the driveway.  Makiah died 23 miles from our house.  So very, very close.  We were almost home...

We even got home at the exact time we should have arrived on October the 8th 2010.  The story of two days written so similarly... except for the endings.  And I am thinking of how we don't know each morning how the day will end.  There usually are not hidden clues.  And how sometimes we are bored with normal.  Or wish that something were different.  And how often we don't even know what we have been spared when we unwrap a normal, boring day.  The wrappings are plain and maybe unsightly.  But oh the sweetness of the moments inside!  The extraordinary ordinary.  A gift worth noticing.  A Giver worth thanking.