Since Lucy's diagnosis, I have recieved several copies of the devotional Jesus Calling. I kept one copy and I refer to it, well...not enough. Every time I open it though the pages just reach out and grab me. Those other copies I have been fortunate enough to share with friends I have met here at St. Jude. I also recently purchased a couple of copies of the book Then Sings My Soul. It is less of a devotional, but equally as moving. God laid on my heart my friend K yesterday and I gathered both books to give her today at the hospital. After I read her Caring Bridge update last night, I knew that God knew just what He was doing. I wasn't sure why He had placed her on my heart, but she was there and I just couldn't shake it. As I was throwing things together this morning at 4:30am, I made sure to grab her books. She came up to the room and we talked for a while this morning and I think it did both of our hearts and minds good. What she doesn't realize is that while I might have given her a tangible gift of those books, she gave me the gift of clarity and honesty last night when I read her post.
There was something about the rawness of her emotions last night that ripped at my heart, making me want to run to her thanking her for speaking what has been on my mind for a while now. Ever so honestly, she talked about her waivering faith, her doubts, her fears. She said "I'm just not ready to lose my son." And while her son is not anywhere near that point, everyone in this journey says that at least 100 times a day. Somedays you think it, somedays you scream it and somedays you cry it.
She had attended a church service at Ronald McDonald house that was led by a pastor who's son is currently a patient here. In a seven degree of seperation type of moment, this pastor is a friend of a guy I used to go to church with. My friend's father baptized me at the age of 8. This friend also was visiting town yesterday and told my own father about this man being here. I just thought it was all so amazing how this circle had come full as K wrote about his teaching yesterday. It made me long to have been there.
As I sit on this hospital couch today holding Lucy's hand, I can't help but to allow myself to go where K is right now. Struggling with understanding why. Mad that Lucy is not starting school like her big sister and friends. Angry that I am planning both my daughter and my son's birthdays with the likelihood I won't even be there on the morning they wake up turning 8 and 1. Confused as to why Lucy had a fever at home but not at the hospital. Frustrated by the fact that I can't get answers about Lucy's shunt. Disgusted that I just had to stop to hold my baby while she violently vomited. The list could go on and on. Mainly I'm just down right tired of dealing with cancer. Lucy's tired and I'm tired.
The last few weeks I have really struggled with my prayers. I have no problem coming up with a list of things for which to be grateful. Thanksgivings seem to pour out as if coming from a faucet. "Thank you I am not alone, a single mom, away from my family. Thank you Lucy still has use of all of her faculties, her limbs, etc." The list of things I need and want come in a steady stream of "Please Lord, heal my child. Please Lord, make her whole. Please Lord, protect my other children and my husband as we are apart." Those things come easy. Almost too easy. Its as if my prayers have become as routine as our trips to the hospital. They are just the things you do each day. What I am missing is the heartfelt emotion that I have had at various times throughout Lucy's illness. I don't want to go back to those moments where you literally are thrown to your knees in such an emotional wreck that you cry out to God with utter abadonment. Those moments where your every breath hangs on the next words that are spoken only from your heart because real words fail you. Those were very bad places in our lives. Those were the places I never want to visit again.
I just need to gain a little passion for Christ right now. I know it seems odd to some to even think that I could be in a place to want God right now. I know I need Him, but I need to want Him, too. Lucy's life, nor anyone else's is a guarantee. The only guarantee I do have is Him. That's why I can't let go.
I think I'm just in need of a little personal revival. I'll get there I'm sure. I'm just strugling for the minute. I wouldn't be human, and I sure wouldn't be much of a Christian if I didn't waiver some. I know God allows us to be tempted and tried by Satan so that we will draw closer to Him. It is in the trials we come to know Him so well. Today I prayed that God would take my hand and bring me out of this funk. I don't want this experience to be wasted. I do pray that all of this will be for His glory and I especially pray that my mind and heart will stay open to what it is He is trying to teach me.