This time last week I was hoping for more time of quiet. I knew pretty soon I’d be interrupted by noisy kitchen rumblings and Saturday morning useless television.
But, I stopped my down time and moved slowly from the couch to shower when my daughter offered to have lunch and go antique shopping. A tiny little town about twenty minutes away, our favorite spot, we’d need to hurry she said.
Just time enough to “go junkin'” and have a little lunch, then back home so she could go fishing with her fiance.
My plan had been to write, to try and make sense of some of the thoughts from a rough previous week.
I had asked a friend earlier this month…I can’t decide if I’m overwhelmed or sad. Just so much good, so much sad, so much to celebrate, so much to grieve.
There was such a disconnect. I felt so disjointed.
I was thinking about sadness and a longing to be hopeful. I felt like life had become too much for me understand and the idea of being hopeful and surrendered was a burden, a chore. Felt unattainable.
Resistant to hoping, I struggled, because all I kept thinking was
Sometimes being sad makes sense and hope feels like being stranded in a deep grey ocean, clinging tightly to whatever is possible, staying afloat, yet wondering, “How will I ever get to shore?”
I attended the funeral of a friend’s husband of 22 years. He, I believe, was on the cusp of living fully, freely. Suddenly massively unexpectedly. he died on an otherwise predictable day. His wife, my friend is sad.
Sadness makes sense.
And I had been stuck on something I couldn’t change. I wanted mama here, their grandma. Ausin will be graduating from high school and Heather will be trying on wedding dresses…both happening in just days, weeks.
Sadness makes sense when grandmas don’t live until grandchildren become adults. This is truth, to me.
Being sad made sense…the kind of trying to but can’t snap out of it sense. But, forced to be a secret kind of sadness because you can’t or don’t really let on how hopeless missing someone feels.
The spiraling down hopelessness made even more ugly because of the feeling of “shouldn’t feel this way” and “your faith is an example to everyone so you can’t be so afraid, so sad, so weak.”
And the promises of and from God are good. But still, that dark grey ocean of longing for what no longer can be surrounds you as you peer anxiously and vacantly to see, feel that hope.
There you are holding onto to what you know of hope; but, still squinting through tired, heavy eyes for rescue, hope…stumbling and stepping cautiously for a level, safe place.
We all stumble in many ways. James 3:2
Days passed, thoughts gathering, circled around and stored up for sharing. Yet, no time for writing, my journal filled with ramblings of prayer and promises of good to come.
Jotted down thoughts on sadness, on hope. Lists made of scriptural recordings of sad and wandering people like me…themselves floating in the murk of what they knew, never doubted, truly and deeply knew was a strong solid hope, yet they too wondered
” How long, Lord until hope is again my safety, my solace?”
How long, Lord until I see your glory?
How long until I see you, know and believe in Hope?
Writing about sad making sense and hope feeling like lost was on my mind and heavy in my heart until last Saturday when I said yes to lunch and shopping.
Until, I walked outside and saw the sky, saw God.
“Look at the sky, Heather, not a single cloud.” I said, lingering for a minute, my face turned upward as I pulled out of the drive.
Nothing but blue.
The brilliant, bluest expanse of blue, as if heaven had thrown open its arms to say, ” All is well.”
My daughter and I had lunch, she discovered the sweetest idea for her reception tables and we headed back home.
Pretty country roads on a blue sky day with happy talk of wedding and then, ” Oh, mama”
And I turn towards her face to see a flash of blue pajama bottoms, a child badly injured.
We stop abruptly, side of the road, get out of my car, hurrying.
She consoled. She comforted. She nurtured. Talked of 5th grade and basketball. Teacher voice, calm and intent . She prayed, silently, kneeling amongst overgrown weeds.
“Jesus, save this child. We are certain Lord of your love for us. Please, Jesus, save this child.”
I had never prayed this way. Never implored, pleaded, cried out in this tone…this manner.
Praying, hoping, knowing, trusting.
And a week ago tomorrow, afraid of what I might hear, I found hope again in the voice of a mama who answered a hospital room phone saying,
“He’s gonna be just fine.
I recognize your voice, you held me. You prayed.”
Hope, I see you. You, God are my hope.