Monday, April 16, 2012

the sparrow

Dearest Lily,

It's late Sunday night and we're all packing the last of our things into suitcases, scrambling to find missing shoes or belts or hair-ties. You're wandering from room to room, watching the flurry of activity, and it's obvious you're curious what all the excitement is about.




Tomorrow we leave for a week of Bible conference, and as always, our home is buzzing with anticipation. Each night this week we'll enjoy different speakers and special music, and we'll listen to reports of what God's been doing in the churches in our fellowship spread throughout the Northwest. Each day we'll hear sermons as well, and spend time with friends we haven't seen since last year...your siblings' best friends will be there, and Mama and Daddy's too. This annual trip is in many ways like a big family reunion for us. It will be a time of refreshing, a week of renewing.




And I so need to be renewed, Lily.

It's been a long month for me, and in spite of the grace of God, and the love and encouragement of family and friends, I am longing for refreshing. I'm just being honest, sweet Lily...I am desperate for healing.



Is it weak to admit that I'm weary of the waiting, Lily? Does it mean my faith is less real because I'm worn down by the days that seem to pass like years, an endless cycle of praying that things pass quickly and wondering please when will this chapter be over?

Then so be it. I've tried pretending in the past that things don't hurt, and found that the result is worse than the pain of admitting...I'm not all that strong. So I'll say it here, and say it with both honesty and relief, and in so doing surrender the last desperate ounce of pride that remains: I'm broken.




And as strange as it may sound, dearest daughter-of-mine, that's a very good place to be. Because there's no room for haughtiness in a broken spirit, no place for self-righteousness or vanity or pride. There is no confidence in the flesh when the spirit is bruised and broken, and as humbling as it is to admit...in my weakness His strength is made perfect.



And maybe that's not inspiring in this day and age, when self-sufficiency is worn as a badge of honor, and reliance on God is often seen as a crutch. But I've lived life both ways, and if there's one thing the trials of life have taught me, and taught me well, it is this:



A bruised reed He will not break and a dimly burning wick He will not extinguish; He will faithfully bring forth justice.   Isaiah 42:3




And this:


 My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me.  





There is peace in surrender. There is hope in knowing that the God who created the universe is not too big to see a bruised reed, a crushed spirit, my hurting heart...






For he has not despised or disdained the suffering of the afflicted one; he has not hidden his face from him but has listened to his cry for help. 




Though I walk in the midst of trouble, You will revive me; You will stretch forth Your hand against the wrath of my enemies, And Your right hand will save me.





To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:

 A time to give birth and a time to die; A time to plant and a time to uproot what is planted.




A time to weep and a time to laugh; A time to mourn and a time to dance.





A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away...





I'm going to soak up all I can this week, Lily. It's going to be a week of hope and renewal and refreshing, and although I'm entering into it all with a broken and hurting heart, it is a surrendered heart, and I do believe in a God who sees all, a Father whose eye is on the sparrow.






He has made everything beautiful in its time.




Love always,

Mama


25 comments:

Karly Jaco said...

beautifully written. I am praying for you!! I'm sorry you are hurting, and that you have to go through things that cause heartache and pain. But I am so thankful, that you know the God of the universe, and you know where to turn. It is true, that He will not forsake us. He will build us up. Praying for you, and your family as you travel. Enjoy the Bible conference. We love them too!! Praying you are uplifted, and refreshed this week!

Karly Jaco said...

beautifully written. I am praying for you!! I'm sorry you are hurting, and that you have to go through things that cause heartache and pain. But I am so thankful, that you know the God of the universe, and you know where to turn. It is true, that He will not forsake us. He will build us up. Praying for you, and your family as you travel. Enjoy the Bible conference. We love them too!! Praying you are uplifted, and refreshed this week!

Team Lando said...

Have a great week, Patti, and enjoy some renewal time!

Mike Sullivan said...

Fantastic and honest post Patti. The Truth and beauty of a surrendered heart. From that comes salvation. You are so blessed to be living and understanding the true meaning of life. You will be healed, because you understand suffering and surrender, hand it all up and all that is left is love and God.

DeAnn said...

Beautiful, simply beautiful. I'm so sorry you are still going through all of this. I had one miscarriage that took five, long, agonizing weeks to complete, and I can certainly understand the brokeness.(((((HUGS))))) I pray that this week will be like a healing balm to your spirit. That you will be wrapped in love, and joy renewed as you spend time with precious friends and loved ones, and that they will help carry you through this difficult time and lift you up to the Lord. It's times like these that I wonder, how do people who don't know the Lord get through this? The pain and despair must seem overwhelming. Blessings to you sweet friend. <3

cathy said...

xoxo


cathy

April Vernon said...

Absolutely beautiful, Patti. I pray that your week of renewal is amazing & even better than expected.

Rochelle said...

Hope your week is completely uplifting and renewing. Much love!

nicole said...

Praying He continues to heal your heart because it is one of the most beautiful hearts I know.

Crystal said...

One of your best posts. You will get that healing you have been praying for, Patti. I just know it.

Mrs. K said...

This is another post I will be revisiting and digesting, very inspiring. My favorite picture was the one of Lils looking down on her shadow on the porch, then I saw the two of her in the drive way while Caleb was running towards her so I decided the second of those was my favorite. Then I saw the one of Lils with curly hair....oh it is so hard to make that decision. I am happy your music has returned too. I love Josh Groben.

Leah said...

Hauntingly lovely. The expression of your words, and all of them highlighted by the most beautiful photos of Lily in the spring with renewal all around her. Hope that your week brings you what you need now. Thank you for sharing your heart.

Becki Little said...

AMEN! Finding Peace in a wounded state is a blessing! I will continue to pray with you to find the healing we all need! Your daughter is scrumptious!

Jenny said...

You have been in my thoughts all week Patti. Hope you have a restful and healing week. The pictures in this post were gorgeous...Miss Lily is growing into such a beautiful little girl, her pictures always make me smile :)

Emily said...

The Bible confrence sounds like fun! Just curious, where is it located?

Sarah said...

I am so sorry Patti. There is a balm in Gilead... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BN9JALQRMb0

Jennifer said...

The pictures of Lily are adorable as always. And your heart is beautiful as always. Hoping you find the strength and peace you need.

Elisabeth said...

"The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit." Psalm 34:18 I am praying that you will know and be comforted by the Lord's nearness to you even as your heart is broken.

Danielle said...

I'll answer since I know :). It's in McMinnville oregon

Danielle said...

O this post makes my heart ache. I know this has been the hardest miscarriage you've been thru - or at least seems the hardest. I'm so sorry for all your hurt & how it has dragged on. That post seemed a little like therapy through writing. I hope this week is therapy thru preaching & fellowship. Love u!!

cara said...

Oh Patti- my heart aches for you. I am praying for you dear friend. I know He will refresh you and renew your strength. I know He is always with you, and I know He will also meet you at this conference- meet all that you need right now. He is Faithful!! He is our Deliverer!! I know you are resting in Him. I love you, and I will continue to lift you up to Him, our Creator and Sustainer, our Healer and Redeemer, our Wonderful God. xoxo

5boysand1girlmake6.com said...

Your words are perfect....perfectly perfect. Good for you, you are taking time to feel and heal. It is the only way. Enjoy yourself and you are in all our prayers. Much Love - Katie

Kimberly said...

That was truly beautiful...thank you for sharing your heart. Praying for a very fruitful and healing week for you.

Janie Fox said...

Hugs dear one. I am praying for you. I know God holds you in his hands. Lily is just gorgeous, and so is your writing.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for your honesty. It is so refreshing to read other Christians say they are broken and know it is NOT bad.

You might be interested in a couple of books by Michael Card-- A Sacred Sorrow and A Sacred Sorrow Experiencing guide. Both books talk about the role of lament in worship. They are amazing they show how lament is more than grieving-- it is being real with God with all your emotions-- sad, happy, mad, etc.. and through it growing closer to the Lord.