Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Swimming Upstream

Good morning to each of you. Today I would just like to share my heart with you.

As many of you know my husband has now been sick for over 16 months. It started with the shingles and quickly moved to something much more challenging. He lost his job back in March and is now unable to work at all. He went from climbing mountains and hiking with the scouts to barely being able to get up the stairs. I have watched my husband shrivel. We have struggled mightily. Sometimes I watch him from a distance trying to walk using a cane and a wall to keep himself upright and I want to scream, this is not how it should be at age 51.

I have watched our grown children watch their Dad change drastically and I weep. Our children have always looked at their Dad as the strong one, ready to leap tall buildings in a single bound and now he has a hard time putting a grandchild on his lap. I can only imagine what our children are going through. I watch my husband’s parents who have always been my parents too silently weep watching their son fade and it breaks my heart. I can only imagine what our parents are going through.

Then I watch our friends who feel so helpless watching their friend deteriorate and they don’t know what to do. One of Rich’s closest friends sat with my husband the last time he preached and he was so bad that day. I hated to ask his buddy to do that but I knew my husband needed him that morning. I can only imagine what he is going through.

I could scream at God that this is not fair. I could shake my fist and say how dare you God. But, I serve a Father who loves me and my precious husband so much. Could he make all of this go away and restore Rich to his health of 16 months ago, YES. But, for whatever reason he chooses not to and we remain faithful. I rest in the arms of my Father even when I can’t rest in my husband’s arms.

Friday we had a CT scan of his chest, abdomen and pelvic to see if they could biopsy anything. We expected the results in 2 weeks. The doctor called Saturday and said they found multiple pulmonary emboli in his lungs so off to the hospital we went. Do you know the emergency room works rather quickly when multiple blood clots are found in your lung? We spent the night in the hospital and now Rich has to give himself shots in his stomach for the forseeable future to break up the clots. This apparently leads the doctors to believe we are dealing with an auto immune problem so more tests are being run. Now we wait again.

In that waiting we put one foot in front of another. May I ask you to pray for my husband and I. I am asking that God will deliver my husband. As his caregiver I feel inadequate to the task at hand. Please pray for strength for both of us. I know God has not abandoned us and I truly rest in His loving arms no matter what.

God Bless each of you today as walk faithfully in the Masters presence.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Into Your Hands

It was now about the sixth hour, and there was darkness over the whole land until the ninth hour, 45 while the sun’s light failed. And the curtain of the temple was torn in two. 46 Then Jesus, calling out with a loud voice, said, “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit!” And having said this he breathed his last. Luke 23:44-46 (ESV)

My precious sister, today is Friday similar to many other Friday’s except one. We have been looking at the 7 things Jesus said while he hung on the cross. What we typically don’t think about is the surroundings of Jesus while on the cross. The sixth hour which would have been around noon total darkness fell over the entire land. Utter darkness. I remember as a child I witnessed a solar eclipse. Here is a description concerning a total eclipse. “The total phase of a solar eclipse is very brief. It rarely lasts more than several minutes. Nevertheless, it is considered to be one of the most awe inspiring spectacles in all of nature. The sky takes on an eerie twilight as the Sun's bright face is replaced by the black disk of the Moon. Surrounding the Moon is a beautiful gossemer halo. This is the Sun's spectacular solar corona.” During the crucifixion the sun light “failed” for not just a few minutes but for three hours. What an awesome thing to witness. People must have been afraid since they had never witnessed anything quite like it. On top of the darkness God allowed the curtain of the temple to be torn in two.

To me the darkness represents the sin that had completely covered the earth. During those three long hours Jesus’ suffering sacrifice was doing it’s work. The temple curtain being torn in two reminds all of us that we will no longer have to see God behind a curtain. Jesus made the only perfect sacrifice so that we can boldly come into his presence without a curtain.

The last thing Jesus said was , “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit!”

“Into your hands” I just love that. It is a great visual for all of us. I want to be in God’s hands. Isaiah 49:16 says this, “Behold, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands; your walls are continually before me.”

Have a great weekend.

In Christ Alone,

Jill