I have to admit that since Beth's arthritis diagnosis, there are fewer minutes my mind settles on blessings, and more minutes it settles on how much there is to do, both in terms of comforting and being the face of Jesus for her, and in terms of physically caring for my family--food prep, clean-up, groceries, laundry, paperwork, baths. When there is chronic pain for a child, mixed with good and bad days, you can never anticipate when dinner will be ready, or how much laundry you'll shuffle. Cuddles and songs come first.
Life feels a little sadder and it's hard to divert the mind from memories of days past--days when running and climbing were effortless. Days when my child looked and felt perfectly normal and got out of bed running. When I get into a picture file, I'm bombarded with older images of a healthy, happy-as-a-lark child.
But I'm not blind. I see the brokenness in the world.
A friend tells me she caught her young son looking at nasty images on the computer. I read that 70% of middle school children have viewed such images. Shocking. Unthinkable. What kind of husbands and fathers will these children make some day? Where will society be without self-sacrificing, committed fathers, capable of real love?
My cousin, I learned, not only has to have a double mastectomy for breast cancer, but her tumors are both large and last year her mammogram looked perfectly normal. This must be the most aggressive form of breast cancer? Will she die in a few years? Will it be in her lymph nodes? How is her young teen son taking the news and does he understand what could happen? They have no spiritual truth--no divine strength to draw from.
Some economists predict a 50% unemployment rate, as the economy corrects from the massive housing bubble and other mishaps.
El Salvador, where a Compassion child, Nelson, resides, is facing loss of homes and crops from flooding and landslides.
And the list goes on.
So I understand how richly I'm blessed, even as I shed tears over old photos.
I need--my daughter needs--only one thing. The Almighty, living God.
Keeping my eyes on Him, I know the rest can't shake me.
So today, I am grateful for....
... my Father, who comforts and sustains me.
...my Jesus, who saves and redeems me.
...my Counselor, who guides and answers me.
...my Lord, who rules me.
And I'm grateful for a believing husband who is a rock, even as he hurts, and for my children who know the power and faithfulness of God.
And I'm grateful for you, readers. Thank you for sharing your mothering journeys, your God journeys, with me. Thank you for your prayers and love.
Tree climbing frightens my nervous-Nelly self. I'm grateful none of our yard trees are conducive. These photos depict highly supervised climbs on a park tree.