These past few weeks have been a time of real soul searching for me.
So much is going on in the world around us; earth shaking, life changing events for so many, that I find myself wanting to "hole up" in our little home, holding you closer and closing my mind to the despair that tries to creep in.
I read about Japan and the aftermath of the earthquakes and tsunamis, and try to imagine what those people are going through right now...I can't even comprehend that kind of loss for so many, can't wrap my mind around what kind of pain they must be going through.
Since having you our eyes have been opened to what children with your diagnosis face every day in many parts of the world. Part of me wants to go back to a simpler life, when I really thought rejection or ridicule was the worst a child with Down syndrome would go through because of that extra chromosome.
Part of me wishes I could forever shut out images of children left in cribs to die, never knowing the love of a mother or father. There are a lot of horrors I can close my mind to in life- discarded children isn't one of them. Last week when I read about a judge in Russia denying a family the right to adopt a little boy, simply because he had Down syndrome, my heart literally, physically hurt. I wish sometimes I didn't have the kind of mind that instantly places myself in someone else's shoes...because as I read those words, I was right there in that mama's place, standing in a courtroom, being told I couldn't take my son home to safety.
Lily, my problems and trials and little hurts in life seem so petty right now, in light of what that Mama is going through. When I think about what that little boy is facing, barring a miracle of God, I am so ashamed of complaining about anything in life...
I've had some little arrows thrown at me lately...just words, and yet it's amazing what just words can do to my heart. I've lost a friend or two over the past few months as well, because of making a stand about some things I believe in. And truthfully, those little arrows caused me to question so much about what I'm doing with this "wild and precious life". I don't like having my motives questioned by others, but the good thing about that- the very useful thing about that- is that it cause me to question my motives.
I didn't start out on this journey with you with all the perfect answers, Lily. I had my moments of doubt, my nights of uncertainty, when I questioned it all...my life, my faith, my purpose. I still have those moments, especially when I see such injustice in the world, and especially when it involves the least of these.
Sometimes I feel so desperate to fix those injustices, and I have a very hard time feeling guilty for enjoying anything in life when so many others are hurting and hopeless. I read a quote on your friend Grady's blog the other day...it really struck a chord with me, because it so summed up what I've been feeling lately...
I arise in the morning torn between a desire to improve the world and a desire to enjoy the world. This makes it hard to plan the day. E.B White
So as I weigh the heaviness I feel in my heart about tragedies and injustices and even trivial hurts in my own heart, I have come to a conclusion.
I can choose to forgive and love and move on.
I can't choose to close my eyes and pretend there isn't sin and evil in the world- at least not without hardening my heart and deliberately turning a blind eye to those who are on the receiving end of that injustice.
I can pray and believe God to move mountains that just seem too big and too impossible for anyone else to move.
I can commit myself to doing what I know to do- praying and believing and lifting up my voice for the least of these, no matter how many find that message discomforting or offensive or dull.
I can enjoy the blessings God has given me; a wonderful home, a faithful husband, and a quiverfull of blessings...not the least of which is you.
I'm going to strive hard to find that balance, sweet Lily. Some days I might find myself so overwhelmed by the mundane, that I just can't seem to pray or speak or think with any kind of productive faith. Some days I might find myself so wrapped up in the sweetness and simplicity of life's blessings that I forget for a few moments the things that normally weigh so heavily on my soul.
But I am making up my mind- once again- that when life seems to be throwing everything it can at me, and the enemy of my soul is trying his best to bring me down with worry and grief and despair, I am going to choose to trust God.
“Because he holds fast to me in love, I will deliver him; I will protect him, because he knows my name. When he calls to me, I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble; I will rescue him and honor him. With long life I will satisfy him and show him my salvation.”
Loving life, and loving you,
*p.s. thank you Stephaniefor inspiring this post:)