And Just Like Mary

Tuber Rose
Photo by Sherri Woodbridge

I feel so weepy today…

I’m not sure why.

I cried over the way the piano player was playing “When I survey the wonderous cross…” Perhaps it was his beautifully pure voice. Or maybe it was the joy on so many faces as they accompanied him in worship. Maybe it was the story of Mary, sitting at Jesus’ feet, wanting to be taught by him, knowing she was so loved by him, certain of soon being saved by Him.

Maybe it is getting back on track, slowly, in my relationship with the Jesus that Mary adored. Being reminded there is no other person, no matter how good, that can fill a void only He was meant to fill.

I haven’t lost my way. I am finding that with Parkinson’s (and I am certain many other diseases), you lose your ability to concentrate, to stay focused, to keep on track. I am finding that with Parkinson’s you find yourself losing your stamina and your energy isn’t always what you want it to be and most likely never will be again.

It is in those times of testing the lack of resilience that you weep. For things lost. For dreams most likely never experiences.

And then you find yourself at the feet of Jesus, just like Mary. And just like Mary, you weep as you worship one like no other. One who loves like no other. One who forgives like no other. One who saves like no other.

And those tears, they wash away the pain. They wash away the heartache. And just like Mary, you know this is not how it ends and again, sitting at His feet, you worship.

Grateful

American Robin – Photo by Sherri Woodbridge

Grateful
for life –
this life
that is hard
not can be
nor will be
but
is
hard
and has been
and can be
and will be
so very hard –
but this life
I am thankful for this life.

Little things make it
worth the pain…

a smile when the day has been long
a hello when you’re feeling alone
a hand to help when you’re tired
a drink of cold water when you’re thirsty
a drop of rain on a warm day
some sunshine through the rain
a plate of cookies when you think you’ve been forgotten
a bouquet of flowers left on your doorstep
a remembrance of your favorite verse at just the right time
the sound of a child’s giggle
listening to a river rushing to the ocean
or a creek as it finds its way through the forest
the feeling when you finally finish
the excitement of being able to begin
the shapes and colors of every different rose
the thorns that protect each one
a caterpillar that waddles up a stem
curls up tight until emerging as a beautiful butterfly
a father playing with his children
a mother nurturing her own

Isn’t it interesting how life is so hard and yet, when you dwell on the good things, life isn’t so overwhelming, after all?

Singing Over Us

IMG_5329Almost every day I enjoyed the privilege of putting my granddaughter down for her nap. Sometimes we read a book (or two or three). Sometimes I sang to her. Sometimes, both.

I used to struggle with the verse, “The LORD your God is with you, he is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, he will quiet you with his love, he will rejoice over you with singing.” Zeph 3:17

Not anymore. Not since singing my little Clara to sleep. For some reason, when I began to sing to her, she stopped fussing. She put her head down on my shoulder and listened. I cold feel her body relax and she would close her eyes and soon (sometimes later than sooner) be  asleep. Sometimes I would think she was asleep and when I began to move her to put her in bed, in a sleepy voice she wold say, “Keep singing, Grammie.”

And so, I did.

I was talking to a friend not long ago. A friend who has Parkinson’s disease and who was struggling. We do that every now and then, you know – struggle. I was trying to encourage her fraught spirit and we started talking about the verse above from the book of Zephaniah. I told her what I’ve told you thus far. Then I told her what God has taught me through singing to little Clara.

God tells us that He is with us. He has told us that He will never leave us – in our weariness, when we are burdened, weighed down, under pressure, stressed, under attack – you know – just plain wiped out physically, emotionally, mentally, spiritually. He has the strength and desire to save us from all that begs to destroy our well-being. Why? He delights in us. He derives pleasure in taking care of us. It brings Him joy and gladness. He revels in doing things – just for us.

He will quiet you with His love… When Clara would lay her head down, I would rub her back and sing to her. She knew she was loved. A child will have difficulty falling asleep when they do not feel safe or loved and they feel safe when they know they are loved.

We are no different. We feel safe when we know that we are loved. We are able to rest – to lean into the Lord and let go of all the things that this life can throw at us. We can rest our head on His shoulder and know He will take care of us and in that, we find comfort and peace.

He will rejoice over you with singing… What a picture this brings to mind. A newborn baby – being cradled in her daddy’s arms as he sings over her with an inexplicable love and inexpressible joy. This is how God looks upon His children and that blows me away. He knows us each by name and loves us with a love that is so unfathomable, we cannot comprehend it. He rejoices over us and delights in us with singing, as a new daddy with his precious newborn.

I don’t know about you, but that makes me smile. It also makes me sleep just a bit more peacefully.