On my journey of healing, and figuring out who God is I've enlisted a guide. Someone I go to every few weeks and vomit all my hurts and hard and questions. She patiently helps me sort through my piles.
A few weeks ago I shared an image I have. One of carrying my small baby girl into the hospital, and seeing Jesus standing at the door as I walk in alone. I felt very abandoned in that place. She challenged me to ask Him where He was. So I did. And I am. And I will.
There hasn't been any lightning flashes. No huge revelations.
There have been some small glimpses. Some stories. A sermon. Things that flickered hope into hopeless. And a word. One word that breathes it's refreshing breath on me every time I ask. It's the same word that is the end of my thoughts when I replay Asher's birth story.
Mercy. An act of leniency or compassion when things could've been different. Maybe should've been.
Shilo shouldn't have lived. The funeral I had planned, the songs I picked, the words that rolled around in my head, I got to tuck them all away as a painful memory. An almost. I didn't live them out. Mercy.
Asher would not have survived until term. Only my husband and the friend who watched the girls know about the day the week before when he didn't move all morning. And I poked and prodded and went to the doctor's office trembling. And, the other times when I told Jason and my doctor that I didn't feel like he was growing. But, in some crazy twist of fate, and life, I got very sick. And I have a seven month old that I nursed and put to bed tonight. Mercy.
I doubt much in my life will ever wrap up neatly. Those packages seem meant for others. But, instead of packages tonight, I'm going to hold tight to the messy, perhaps too small, gift I have been given in a word.
I'll kiss my mercy. I'll listen to them breathe. I'll snuggle in with them. I'll lose my patience. I'll get busy. I'll forget. I'll start all over. In the end, mercy.