I John 3:18

All original content copyright Jessica Nicole Schafer, 2007-2016.

Friday, November 21, 2008

AS HE WAS SQUIRMING ALL AROUND IN THE TUB, I WAS BUSY TRYING TO WASH HIS HAIR WHILE STANDING ON AN ANKLE THAT STILL HURT TERRIBLY. SO, I WAS TRYING TO GET MY PRECIOUS SON’S BATH DONE QUICKLY TO SPARE MYSELF A LITTLE BIT OF PAIN. AS EVERYONE KNOWS, IT’S NOT EASY FOR LITTLE ONES TO BE STILL, ESPECIALLY WHEN THEY’RE SURROUNDED BY BUBBLES AND TOYS. “OKAY, BABY. MOMMY HAS TO WASH YOUR HAIR, SO LOOK UP FOR ME…” I SAID TO HIM AS I WAS POURING WATER ON HIS LITTLE HEAD AND THEN PROCEEDED TO LATHER THE SOAP UP. AMIDST HIS FAVORITE TIME OF THE EVENING, I BEGAN TO POUR THE WATER OVER HIS HEAD TO RINSE OUT THE SOAP…ALL THE WHILE REMINDING HIM TO LOOK UP. AND OF COURSE, AS IT HAPPENS ALMOST EVERY BATHTIME, HE LOOKED DOWN IN SEARCH OF THE TOY THAT JUST SLIPPED OUT OF HIS HAND. HE STARTED STRESSING OUT A LITTLE BIT, QUICKLY SEARCHING FOR ME TO GRAB ONTO SO HE COULD USE MY SHIRT TO DRY HIS EYES. I QUICKLY SAID TO HIM, “DYLAN, BABY, YOU HAVE TO KEEP LOOKING UP, OKAY? YOU HAVE TO LOOK UP BECAUSE AS SOON AS YOU LOOK DOWN ALL THE SOAP AND WATER GETS INTO YOUR EYES AND YOU CAN’T SEE ANYTHING, AND THAT’S WHY IT HURTS.”

I KID YOU NOT, AS SOON AS THOSE WORDS WERE COMING OUT OF MY MOUTH, I COULD HEAR THE SAME WORDS BEING TOLD TO MYSELF. LIFE’S HARD? ARE YOU ALONE? ARE YOU WORRIED? ARE YOU STRESSED? HAVE YOU BEEN BETRAYED? WORRIED ABOUT BILLS? WORRIED ABOUT YOUR HEALTH OR THAT OF A LOVED ONE? HAVE YOU BEEN LET DOWN? HAVE YOU BEEN ABANDONED? ARE YOU HURTING? ARE YOU DISCOURAGED? ARE YOU BURNT OUT? ARE YOU GRIEVING? SAD? FRUSTRATED? ANGRY? KEEP LOOKING UP.

THOUGH WE SOMETIMES HAVE TO LIVE THROUGH TIMES IN LIFE THAT ARE MUCH LESS THAN HAPPY, WE HAVE TO KEEP LOOKING UP. HE IS OUR HOPE. HE IS OUR FRIEND. “THOUGH HE SLAY ME, I WILL HOPE IN HIM. NEVERTHELESS I WILL ARGUE MY WAYS BEFORE HIM.” (JOB 13:15)
SINCE THE LAST YEAR, AFTER LOSING MY BEST FRIEND, MY SWEET MOMMA, LIFE HAS BEEN TOUGH. IT’S BEEN DESPERATE, I HAVE BEEN DESPERATE. I WON’T GO INTO EVERYTHING LIFE’S BEEN HANDING MYSELF AND MY FAMILY, BUT SUFFICE IT TO SAY THAT WE ARE READY FOR A CHANGE, WE ARE READY FOR SOMETHING GOOD. THROUGH ALL THIS, I HAVE KEPT CLOSE TO MY HEAVENLY FATHER, THOUGH HE INDEED IS POWERFUL ENOUGH TO STOP ALL THE HEARTACHE, HE ALLOWS IT…..YET I CAN ONLY CLING TO HIM BECAUSE HE HOLDS THE POWER OF LIFE AND DEATH IN HIS VERY HAND. HOW CAN I NOT STILL RUN TO HIM? SOMETIMES IN LIFE, WE’RE NOT PUT THROUGH TRAGEDY TO TEACH US A LESSON, SOMETIMES THAT’S WHAT HAPPENS. AND WE HAVE A CHOICE TO MAKE. WE CAN EITHER STILL FOLLOW HIM, OR TURN AWAY. I CANNOT TURN AWAY. IT ACHES MY HEART WHEN I HEAR THINGS LIKE, “WELL, GOD IS TRYING TO TEACH YOU SOMETHING THROUGH THE DEATH OF YOUR LOVED ONE…”……WHAT?!?!?!?! THAT IS SUCH A SELFISH WAY TO VIEW DEATH. SO YOU MEAN GOD WOULD ACTUALLY TAKE ANOTHER PRECIOUS PERSON’S LIFE JUST TO TEACH A LESSON TO ME? HEAVEN FORBID. NO, MY PRECIOUS READER, THAT IS NOT HOW GOD WORKS. YES, WE MAY LEARN LESSONS IN THE MIDST OF TRAGEDY. BUT DEATH IS A PROMISE IN THIS LIFE. WE ARE ALL BORN, AND WE ALL DIE IN THIS LIFE. YET WITH HIM THERE IS ETERNAL LIFE. AND TRAGEDY MAY HAPPEN. MORE OFTEN THAN NOT, IT DEFINITELY WILL. BUT STAY CLOSE TO HIM. HE’S THE ULTIMATE COMFORTER. HE WILL NOT LEAVE YOU, THOUGH YOU FEEL HE HAS.

I HAVE BEEN THINKING SO MUCH ABOUT THE PARABLE OF THE SOWER IN MATTHEW 13: 18-23. I ENCOURAGE YOU TO READ IT. MY HOPE IS THAT I WILL NOT BECOME ONE WHO LETS THE AFFLICTION OR PERSECUTION (VV. 21), OR THE WORRY OF THE WORLD AND THE DECEITFULNESS OF WEALTH (VV. 22) CHOKE HIS WORD OUT OF ME. I HOPE I CAN PROVE TO BE ONE WHO WAS “GOOD SOIL” (VV. 23). I HOPE THE SAME FOR YOU. YES, OUR LIVES MAY BE FILLED WITH SORROW, PAIN, WORRIES, FEAR, HURT…….BUT IT WILL NOT LAST FOREVER. AND EVEN IF IT DOES LAST THIS LIFETIME THROUGH, HE HAS ALREADY HAD THE LAST WORD!! MARANATHA!!! COME, LORD JESUS!!! I AM SO WEARY. I AM SO HURT. I AM SO TIRED. HELP ME KEEP MY EYES ON YOU SO I CAN STILL SEE, HELP ME AND MY FAMILY KEEP OUR EYES ON YOU AND NOT LET THIS WORLD TAKE AWAY THE HOPE YOU’VE PLANTED SO FIRMLY IN US. HELP US ALL KEEP LOOKING UP, NO MATTER WHAT LIFE THROWS OUR WAY.

*”COME TO ME, ALL WHO ARE WEARY AND HEAVY-LADEN, AND I WILL GIVE YOU REST. TAKE MY YOKE UPON YOU AND LEARN FROM ME, FOR I AM GENTLE AND HUMBLE IN HEART, AND YOU WILL FIND REST FOR YOUR SOULS. FOR MY YOKE IS EASY AND MY BURDEN IS LIGHT.” -MATTHEW 11:28-30

“MY SOUL WEEPS BECAUSE OF GRIEF; STRENGTHEN ME ACCORDING TO YOUR WORD.” -PSALM 119:28

I WILL LIFT UP MY EYES TO THE MOUNTAINS; FROM WHERE SHALL MY HELP COME? MY HELP COMES FROM THE LORD, WHO MADE HEAVEN AND EARTH. HE WILL NOT ALLOW YOUR FOOT TO SLIP; HE WHO KEEPS YOU WILL NOT SLUMBER.” –PSALM 121:1-3 (emphasis mine)

KEEP LOOKING UP.

2 comments:

Rebecca said...

I love reading your thoughts. Keep looking up. I like it.

Thanks for your text...I just love you and can't wait for our boys to meet each other :) Fun times ahead!

Andrea said...

I want you to know that my prayers are with you, even though this may be a tough time of the year I hope you have a very blessed Thanksgiving. I love you! :)