Monday, September 7, 2020

What He Said

Come to Me,
all you who labor and are heavy laden,
and I will give you rest.
-Jesus, Matthew 11:28

He didn't say:

            Come to Me, all you who
                            Have a meal plan
                            Got your finances in order
                            Stay caught up on laundry
                            Hit your goal weight

He didn't say:

            Come to Me, all you who
                            Are killing it at your job
                            Have the perfect home life
                            Keep your house spotless
                            Are a model spouse/parent/sibling

He didn't say:

            Come to Me, all you who
                            Never lose it
                            Got the credit cards paid off
                            Have it all figured out
                            Are living your best life now
No. He didn't say any of those things.   

He DID say:

               Come to Me, all you who
                            Labor (weary)
                            Are heavy laden (carrying big burdens)
If this Labor Day finds you weary - finds you carrying heavy burdens at home... at work... in your heart - Jesus has a place for you. It's next to Him. The Savior of those who are tired, overworked, weak, and weighed down. 

Take heart, fellow laborer. We have a Savior who has a place of rest for us. Go to Him. Carry your weariness and your worries to Him. 
                            He wants them. 
                            He wants you
                            He said so.

                                                        Monday Moment is a little devotional to help kick start your week. See you again next time!

Wednesday, September 2, 2020

Frankie and Charlie

I think of them every day, throughout the day. Frances and Charles. Frankie and Charlie. Our children. In heaven.

It was mid November last year, and something wasn't right. I did a tele-doc appointment, and the diagnosis came back quickly, easily: Shingles. Only the doctor wouldn't prescribe me any "hard" medicines because my period was late. Could you be pregnant?, the doctor asked. I grimaced, and explained that I was 40... and childless.

How wrong we all were. The "Shingles" was a pregnancy rash. I was pregnant.

I found out the week of Thanksgiving and told Matthew Thanksgiving day. It was a day I'll never forget. We joyfully celebrated the holidays-  we were giddy, in fact- and I started knitting a baby blanket. We told immediate family selectively, knowing the risks associated with our geriatric pregnancy, and asked them to pray with us for this tiny miracle. 

Mid-January. Sonogram appointment. I started worrying when the sono tech grew quiet, then stopped talking. I started shaking when she wouldn't look me in the face. My world fell out from under me when the doctor walked in the room and quietly shut the door behind her.

We lost baby Frances on a cold winter's night, at home. 

- - - - -

Fast forward to spring. In the height of the Covid-19 quarantine, I got another rash. Not as severe as last time, but this time around, I knew it wasn't Shingles.

I heard a heartbeat in June. Due to the pandemic, Matthew wasn't allowed to come with me to my appointments, so I watched the screens alone as the tiny baby with its perfect heart beat developed. Your rainbow baby, a dear friend said. Everything was good, the baby seemed strong - a miracle at my 41 years old. The week we planned to tell the world, I woke up and instantly knew something was wrong.

Same sonogram room. Same doctor. This time she told us and then left the exam room, quietly closing the door behind her.

We lost baby Charlie on a blistering hot summer's night, at home.

- - - - -

I'm going to write, in the coming days, about my experience with loss and how I believe we can respond when loved ones are going through it. Things we can do (and should not do). Things we can say (and should never say). But right now it's still too recent and still too... hard. 

For now I simply needed to tell you about our sweet babies. I needed you to know the things that have happened FOR us, not TO us. And I hoped you would rejoice with us in the precious lives that I can't wait to see on the other side of all of this.

- - - - -

Revelation 5 talks about heaven - as a literal place, of course - and how every created being in heaven and on earth will vocally praise God. I truly believe I will stand with my children one day and hear their sweet voices as we all praise God, together, fully knowing and fully known (1 Corinthians 13). 

What a day that will be.