charlie's song


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What Easter Means…When Someone You Love Has Died

Today is Easter Sunday.  Glowy, pastel, egg-filled Easter Sunday.  One thing is for sure, in spite of all the ridiculous things surrounding it…Easter has officially become my favorite holiday.   Valentines day without Charlie just felt like constant loss.  So did my birthday, and St. Patricks day.  Those holidays would have been so much better and sweeter if Charlie were here.  They just would be.   But, now Easter truly MEANS something.  So much more than what it meant before Charlie came into our lives.  It has always meant something, but it means infinitely more to me now that Charlie has died.  You just cannot fathom how immeasurably precious it is to know that we will be raised from death someday, until someone you love very deeply is laying in a cold, dark grave.

It is now so much more clear to me that Resurrection Sunday is the most important day of our lives.  It is the day that I live for and put my hope in in a brand new way.   The one day that reminds me, that unless it is all TRUE about Jesus having power over death…I will not survive this life without my baby boy.  I love how Paul says that if Jesus is not risen, then our WHOLE FAITH is in vain, and we are to be pitied.   I feel that deeply today.  If Jesus cannot raise Himself, and therefore me and my baby from the grave someday…then all of this is completely in vain.  I’m glad that God put that in His Word for us.  I really needed Him too.  And it makes Easter special even though I absolutely hate that Charlie is not here with us for this Easter Sunday.

Today we visited the Valley as a family.  I’ve decided to call the cemetery where Charlie’s body is buried “The Valley” because I don’t like the other names for it.  That, and our kids keep calling it “The Aquarium.”  I, of course, have no idea where they picked up that name.  But, I like “The Valley” because Charlie’s sweet body actually is buried in a beautiful green valley.  And no place and no moment have been a greater valley in our lives, then having to say goodbye to our baby boy.

And so, today we visited the Valley.  Charlie’s marker had just arrived and it was so incredibly painful and final to look at his name on a piece of stone.  I had wanted to see that beautiful name on so many things.  I had wanted to see Charlie’s name scribbled in little kid handwriting on his homework each day.  To see his name on homemade cards he lovingly made me for Mother’s Day.  To see his name on baseball awards, and his wedding program someday.  I didn’t want to see his precious name on a grave.

Never, ever on a grave.

But there it is, his treasured, beautiful name, on a piece of stone.  A piece of stone, covering a baby-sized grave.  I hate that this is our life.  But more than ever before, it gives me grace and fresh strength to know that Jesus has actually burst forth alive from a grave.  That Jesus has actually conquered our greatest enemies of sin and death, and that the same power that raised Jesus from the dead, He still has.  And someday He will use that power to raise my baby boys body.  To  raise me and you who have put our trust in Christ.  And because of this promise alone, I know that Charlie, and knowing him and loving him is not lost forever.  I will see him…someday.  I will take in the color of his eyes, the warmth of his smile, and the whole of his beautiful soul…someday.  I will love him and say that precious name to his face…someday.  And we will be with Jesus together forever…someday.  This is the power of Easter Sunday.

For if the dead are not raised, then Christ has not been raised either.  And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins.   Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ are lost.  If only for this life we have hope in Christ, we are of all people most to be pitied.  But Christ has indeed been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep.”  I Cor. 15:16-20

Happy Easter friends.  I am praying that it will be a day filled with reminders of the risen Christ who gives hope not only for this life…but for eternity when He will finally make all things right.  I.  can’t.  wait.

When we were leaving the Valley today I overheard Freddo say, “I miss Charlie.  I wish we could have him.”

Me too, baby.  Someday.

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God On A Cross

This is my last post until Easter.  I’ll be taking a break from blogging for the week.

But, I wanted to leave you with something that has meant so much to my hurting heart over the last few weeks since we buried our precious son.  This is one of my favorite pictures ever painted of what happened that day long ago on the cross.  It’s so good I hand-typed it for you.  These words are from the book “When God Weeps.”

I am praying that the Lord will use them to speak to your heart as we move towards the Bad Friday that made Easter so very good.

We come unto the scene just as Jesus’ trial is finished…

“By the time the spitting is through, more saliva is on him than in him.  No longer can he be recognized.  “Cut him down from the post.  Send him toting his crossbar to the playground.”  Up Skull Hill to the welcome of other poorly paid legionnaires enjoying themselves.

“On your back with you!”  One raises a mallet to sink in the spike.  But the soldier’s heart must continue pumping as he readies the prisoner’s wrist.  Someone must sustain the solider’s life minute by minute, for no man has this power on his own.  Who supplies breath to his lungs?  Who gives energy to his cells?  Who holds his molecules together?  Only by the Son do “all things hold together,”  (Colossians 1:17).  The victim wills that the solider live on- he grants the warrior’s continued existence.  The man swings.

As the man swings, the Son recalls how he and the Father first designed the medial nerve of the human forearm- the sensations it would be capable of.  The design proves flawless- the nerve performs exquisitely.  “Up you go!”  They lift the cross.  God is on display in his underwear, and can scarcely breath.

But these pains are a mere warm-up to his other and growing dread.  He begins to feel a foreign sensation.  Somewhere during this day an unearthly foul odor begins to waft, not around his nose, but his heart.  He feels dirty.  Human wickedness starts to crawl  upon his spotless being- the living excrement from our souls.  The apple of his Father’s eye turns brown with rot.

His Father!  He must face his Father like this!

From heaven the Father now rouses himself like a lion disturbed, shakes his mane, and roars against the shriveling remnant of a man hanging on a cross.  Never has the Son seen the Father look at him so, never felt even the least of His hot breath.  But the roar shakes the unseen world and darkens the visible sky.  The Son does not recognize these eyes.

“Son of Man!”  Why have you behaved so?  You have cheated, lusted, stolen, gossiped- murdered, envied, hated, lied.  You have cursed, robbed, overspent, overeaten- fornicated, disobeyed, embezzled, and blasphemed.  Oh, the duties you have shirked, the children you have abandoned.  Who has ever so ignored the poor, so played the coward, so belittled my name!  Have you ever held your razor tongue?  What a self-righteous pitiful drunk- you, who molest young boys, peddle killer drugs, travel in cliques, and mock your parents.  Who gave you the boldness to rig elections, foment revolutions, torture animals, and worship demons?  Does the list never end?  Splitting families, raping virgins, acting smugly, playing the pimp-buying politicians, practicing extortion, filming pornography, accepting bribes.  You have burned down buildings, perfected terrorist tactics, founded false religions, traded in slaves- relishing each morsel and bragging about it all.  I hate, I loathe these things in you!  Disgust for everything about you consumes me!  Can you not feel my wrath?”

Of course the Son is innocent.  He is blamelessness itself.  The Father knows this.  But the divine pair have an agreement, and the unthinkable must now take place.  Jesus will be treated as if personally responsible for every sin ever committed.

The Father watches as his heart’s treasure, the mirror-image of Himself, sinks drowning into raw, liquid sin.  Jehovah’s stored rage against humankind from every century explodes in a single direction.

“Father!  Father!  Why have you forsaken me?!”

But heaven stops its ears.  The Son stares up at the One who cannot, who will not, reach down or reply.

The Trinity had planned it.  The Son endured it.  The Spirit enabled him.  The Father rejected the Son whom he loved.

Jesus, the God-man from Nazareth, perished.  The Father accepted his sacrifice for sin and was satisfied.  The Rescue was accomplished.

God set down his saw.

This is who asks us to trust him when he calls on us to suffer.”

I read these words through tears.  This actually happened.  And for me.  I still struggle constantly with why we had to suffer the loss of our precious son.  But I know in my heart that the cross is God’s best reason for why I can trust Jesus in a world so broken by sin that even babies die.  I will never get to live life with my baby boy the way I wanted to this side of Heaven.  It will be a permanent wound.  But Jesus has healed me from terminal soul cancer on the cross.  The cross proves just how much God understands the sting of death and the weight of humanity’s suffering from sin.  And in His deep love Jesus took all of that upon Himself.

“For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.”  -2 Corinthians 5:21

Grateful for the cross and glad the tomb was empty,

Mist


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From Life’s First Cry

Today I went to the cemetery.  I had to.  This morning I had gone to Target to buy Easter candy.  I was about to go through the checkout line when all of a sudden…I heard it.  The piercing cry of a newborn.  There was a newborn baby boy an aisle over from me, and when I heard his sharp cry I seriously thought I was going to throw up from the pain..  Right there in the middle of Target.

I made it out of the store, and wept all the way home.

The sound took me right back to a moment in hospital.  I had just given birth to Charlie and the nurses were lovingly wrapping up his tiny body in swaddle blankets.  Suddenly we heard the cry of a baby who had just been born in the next room over.  Words cannot even begin to describe the searing pain of that moment.  To hear from another room what I wanted so very badly to hear in ours.  I had wanted to hear my baby boy cry.  Just once.  To see his beautiful eyes.  Even for just a moment.  I had wanted his LIFE.  And all I had was his death.

And now, if i want to be near my baby I have to go to a cemetery.  To the special spot called “Babyland” where the little ones are kept.  Did you even know that there was such a place in cemeteries?  Neither did I.  I know that Charlie, my Charlie, the one with feelings, and thoughts, and intellect, and will… is not actually there.  But his knees are there.  And I wanted so very badly to put bandaids on those knees.  To kiss them when he fell.  To watch them as he grew tall into a boy and then a man.

I had felt those very knees kicking inside of me.  I had wanted those knees so bad.  And the pain of it all is beyond words.

A few weeks ago a girl wrote to me and said, “I just want you to know how much your words encourage me that even if the worst thing ever happened to me…God would carry me through it.”  I’ve thought a lot about those words, and I want to affirm them again and again.  These have been the darkest and hardest days of my entire life.  And yet, everything about who God is, and absolutely nothing about who I am… has carried me this far.

The moment I found out Charlie had died, it was like someone had taken a beautiful glass jar, and thrown it violently to the ground.  So many dreams, so much innocence, so many anticipations and hopes…SHATTERED in an instant.  And for the last 8 weeks, I feel like I have been laying on the floor next to my shattered life.  And yet, God has carried me.  Every.  Single.  Day.

And I know that NO MATTER WHAT you are facing today…if you turn your face to Him and cry out to Him…He will carry you.

I keep thinking about the words to my favorite hymn, “In Christ Alone.”

No guilt in life, no fear in death
This is the power of Christ in me
From a life’s first cry to final breath
Jesus commands my destiny

No power of hell, no scheme of man
Could ever pluck me from His hand
Til He returns or calls me home
Here in the power of Christ I stand

From the moment when I heard that first cry in the silence of our hospital room…all the way up to this very second, the Jesus who commands my destiny has carried me.  And I know that He can carry you.

As Easter approaches and everyone rushes to the store to buy jelly beans and chocolate bunnies, I do not want to miss the truth of what Easter is really about.  It’s about an empty tomb.  And the Jesus who conquered DEATH, and walked right out of it.

Jesus died to bring us back to God.  Will you let Him take you there?  Will you let Him love you?

From life’s first cry to final breath…Jesus will carry us.  All the way into the presence of God.

If…we let Him.


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When Kids Play “Dying”

Ten days before Charlie was born I stumbled upon this scene while the kids were playing…

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It’s a double labor… in case you were wondering.  But don’t worry, Dr. Fred is on the job and he is quite proficient since his big sister makes him play “labor and delivery” all the time.  I love this, because in a way what they are really playing is “Life.”  After seeing Mommy pregnant for most of her remembered life, Emma is so insightful about labor and delivery.  It makes it even more bittersweet now when I hear them play “Dying.”

Right after Charlie died, I overheard the kids playing something about dying with Emma’s Barbies.  I was a little worried at first, but then a friend reminded me that play is one of the key ways that kids work out what they are thinking and feeling and experiencing in life.  And to my utter heartbreak…right now this is our life.  Death, has become a very real part of our lives.  I hate that.  And honestly, today I did not want to get out of bed.  I just don’t want this to be our life.  I don’t want to have to live in one place while my baby boy lives in another, and sometimes I just feel really beaten down that this is our reality.  In those moments it is easy to cry out to God and say, “Why!  Why is this our life?  I hate death!  God, do You even understand how much death hurts!?”

And today, He reminded me that He does.  I was “practicing” Fred’s Awana Bible verse with him this morning, which is a nice way of saying that I had it pretty much memorized.  It was around my tenth time saying his verse that I was finally struck by its meaning…

“Christ loved us, and gave Himself up for us.” 

It was a simple truth, and one that you would think would be constantly on my mind as we approach Holy Week…but after saying it over and over again it finally hit me.  Christ died for me.  I know intellectually that this happened at some point, but it is amazing how easily I can forget it.  It’s probably because my Jesus, for as long as I’ve known Him, has always been alive.  We are so good at living in the present reality of Christ’s resurrection, that I think we sometimes breeze right past the fact that Jesus actually had to die.

When my heart physically hurts thinking of my baby’s precious body in a dark grave…I don’t want to forget that Jesus also faced a lonely grave.

When my soul feels crushed under the weight of death’s separation and suffering…I don’t want to forget that Jesus also knows what it feels like to be separated from His Father’s love.

And when tears come to my eyes as I watch little people desperately trying to grasp the realities of life in a broken world where every single person they know is dying…I don’t want to forget that Jesus, who singlehandedly went to battle against the power of the grave, has become our way to life.

For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 8:38-39)

As we journey towards Holy Week, I pray that together we can cling to this promise…that we have a Savior who actually understands the very things we need to be saved from.  He faced every one of them on the cross.  And then, three days later His love triumphed over death’s dark grave.

It doesn’t take away the pain, but it does remind me of what is true about the One who comforts me.  The One who died, and who is now, very much alive.  Forever.  And with my Charlie.


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Giving Up A Son

In a few days Holy Week will begin.  The week we remember Christ’s sufferings on the cross as the propitiation for our sins.  Or more simply put…we remember how much He loves us.  We remember the depths of our sin, and the extent of His sacrifice.  Both the Son’s…and the Father’s.

Today, I’ve been thinking about the Father’s.  Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot about the idea of “giving up your son.”  One of the things that people seem to write a lot in the sympathy cards we receive is “I can’t imagine,” or “I can only imagine the suffering you are experiencing in having to give up your son.”  And it’s true.  Most people can only imagine at best.  But, I am continually overwhelmed by the reality that GOD…the Creator of the Universe and the Author of all life, who could have written any story any way He wanted, both ours and His…can actually imagine exactly what we are feeling in having to give up our son to Him.

Sometimes on the hardest days of grief my heart cries out to God, “Do you know how much this hurts!”  He does.  “Do you know what it feels like to live apart from my precious son!”  He did.  “Are you with me in this endless searing pain?  I AM.  I’m so thankful that in this very painful chapter of our lives, we have been given a Book filled with reminders that the Great I AM understands.

And amazingly, HE CHOSE THIS. 

On the night that I went into the hospital to check on Charlie’s heartbeat…I was in no way anticipating that our baby boy had already died.  I was so unsuspecting that anything was wrong that I even went to the hospital alone.

But God...willingly placed Jesus in Mary’s womb, knowing for what purpose He was giving up His Son.

“But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law,  to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons.”  Galatians 4;4-5

On the night Charlie was born and I got my first glimpse of our precious little boy’s body, nothing in me wanted to give him up to God.

But God…chose with great intentionality to give up fellowship with His Son.

“He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all–how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things?”  Romans 8:32

And as we lay Charlie’s body in the ground, if God had asked me in that moment of agonizing pain, “Will you willingly give up life on earth with Charlie so that you and others can know Me more deeply through this?  OR…would you like for Me to give him back?”  I would have chosen Charlie.  Every day of the week, and twice on Sunday.  And I still would.

But God…demonstrates his own love for us in this:  While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”  Romans 5:8

This Easter season feels so different than any I’ve experienced before.  I never realized how painful it is to let go of someone you love so much.  Charlie and I had 300 days of unbroken fellowship sharing my body and living life together, and suddenly my little one was gone.  It is not what I wanted.  It is so very much harder than I had even thought possible.  It is so very painful to live with this suffering and to trust God in what He has chosen.  But how can I not?  He chose to give up His very Son, so that we might be adopted as His own.

I am so very thankful He did.  Thankful He who could have chosen something different…Chose suffering.  Chose separation.  Chose sorrow.  And by it…Chose us.

His, Mist


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The God Who Sees

Today is St. Patrick’s Day.  Not exactly a huge holiday, but I know that if baby Charlie were with us today he would be dressed in a little green onsie and would probably already have gotten pinched at some point.  Every holiday that passes without our precious boy reminds me that he really is never coming to live with us…and I am filled with fresh pain.

I used to think about Charlie every moment of the day and, like a burn victim, I was in a state of constant pain.  Now, I think of Charlie about every other moment of the day.  And when I do think of him, it almost hurts even more…it hurts in the fresh remembering.  And it hurts that I’m forgetting.  Forgetting him in moments.  Forgetting exactly what it felt like to hold him, even for that one precious day.  Forgetting the features of his sweet little face.  Ahhhhh, I can’t even breathe as I write.  These are the moments when I most question the sky.  So many questions today.  Why God?  Why couldn’t we have him?  Why must we be in so much pain?  I know that these questions might only get answered in heaven someday.  But one question comes back daily…THE question of all of our lives.

The other day we went to the park as a family and I was struck by something.  For some reason, every time our kids did anything they wanted to make sure we were watching.  It was like they were acrobats putting on a show at the exact same time and it was a fight to get our undivided attention.  Every single twirl.  Every single dance move.  Every single jump.  “Mommy, Look at me!’  “Daddy, do you see me!”

Fred is especially funny about it.  Every time Freddo jumps he says,  “Mommy, do you want to see my best jump?”  And then he will say, “Now, do you want to see my other best jump!”  Every jump of course, looks exactly the same.  They just want us to notice every little thing they do, and it seems like their little hearts are crying out, “Do you see me mommy?  Do you see what I can do daddy?  Do you notice me?  Am I captivating?  Are you interested in me?  Do I still have your attention?

And right now I am doing the same thing to God.  That is the big question I am saying as I cry out to the sky…God, do you still see me?  Right now, I am hurting so badly and I am struggling so hard to believe that God is near and that He really does still see me.  Do You see how much I am hurting Daddy?  Do You care?  Do You know what You did to me?  Do You know how much it hurts that You took Charlie away from me?  Do you still see me?

One of the hard things about being finite humans, and trying to understand an infinite God is that we are just not like Him in so many ways.  Sometimes we “make” God into our own image.  And oftentimes…we’re kind of lame.  We’re human.  I’m an ever-blogging, iPhone-checking, quick to anger, slow to listen, quick to speak, often self-absorbed, always grieving, usually overwhelmed, permanently broken…Mommy, and I only have so much to give to my precious babies.  I AM actually only so interested in seeing their every jump and every twirl…as much as I wish I could say that I felt differently.

But not God.

Somehow deep in my heart I know that our Abba Father is a far better parent to us, even though right now I feel like I got left out in the street.  Sometimes I feel like God let me get run over in the street by taking Charlie away.  I feel like He doesn’t even notice that I am broken and bleeding and that my heart is collapsing inside of me, let alone see every twirl and jump I take.  But I know that isn’t true.  Sometimes I know that better than others, but I have felt a great many things in the last seven weeks, and completely neglected by God and forgotten is not one of those things.  Beat up.  Bruised.  Battered.  Broken.  (Insert a great “b” adjective, and you could just keep right on going…) But I cannot say that I truly believe that God does not LOVE me…even if that God did let me get run over in the street.  Even if that God did let my baby boy die.  Would He really let us get hit by a truck… and then hold us in the hospital and bind up our every wound as we lay dying for breathe, and fighting for life?

Maybe just maybe.

At some point…all of us are going to experience deep suffering and pain.  At some point…all of us are even going to die.  At some point…all of us are going to get hit by a truck and then stumble upon David’s words in Psalm 22 and think, “THAT is exactly how I feel today.”

“My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?
    Why are you so far from saving me,
    so far from my cries of anguish?
 My God, I cry out by day, but you do not answer,
    by night, but I find no rest.”

And He will still be God.

And even as David cried out to Him, “Daddy, do you see me?  Do you see my best jump?!!” his very next words were…

Yet you are enthroned as the Holy One;
    you are the one Israel praises.
 In you our ancestors put their trust;
    they trusted and you delivered them.

To you they cried out and were saved;
    in you they trusted and were not put to shame.

And that is how it it.  That is how it goes in this crazy life of having GOD…THE Lord of the Universe-God, as our Daddy.  We not only need to wrestle with all the “hard” verses in His Word to us…but also with the good ones.  The ones that make it resoundingly clear that God indeed holds our broken hearts as we lay bruised and bleeding.  The words He really does speak into our deepest question, “My God, My God, Do you still see me?”

“Hagar gave this name to the LORD who spoke to her: “You are the God who sees me,” for she said, “I have now seen the One who sees me.” Genesis 16:13

“The eyes of the Lord are on the righteous, and his ears are attentive to their cry.  The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.”  Psalm 34:15,18

“The LORD your God is with you, He is mighty to save.  He will take great delight in you.  He will quiet you with His love.  He will rejoice over you with singing.”  Zephaniah 3:17

Right now, so many people around me are hurting so badly.  People at church.  People at Emma’s school.    People in my own family.  Friends across the miles who have also had to bury babies.   And together, we have to cling to what is still true in life’s hospital room of  suffering.  That even on our darkest desert night…we have a God who sees.

His, Misty


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Bounce Moments

Today I’ve been thinking about the movie Bounce.

Though it wasn’t exactly a blockbuster sensation,  I’ve thought about this movie so many times over the last 7 weeks.  I LOVE how this movie addresses one of the most difficult aspects of grief.  It is by no means a brilliant movie, but there is one scene in the movie that has been on my mind constantly since Charlie died.

Gwyneth Paltrow plays the wife of a wonderful husband and the mother of 2 sweet boys.  And Ben Affleck plays this guy who meets her husband at an airport bar one night.  Ben is in pursuit of a girl he meets at the airport and Gwyneth’s husband wants to get home to see his wife and kids, so at the last minute Ben offers to switch tickets with Gwyneth’s husband.  And then…the plane that G’s husband is on crashes in the night.  Ben feels horrible for switching tickets and comes to apologize to G, but then he falls in love with G and her boys.  (Sorry, I’m giving away the whole sad movie…I often do that.  My husband loves this about me.)  Anyways, there is a moment in the movie when G doesn’t know that B changed places with her husband…she just knows she’s falling in love with B and its hard for her.   Gwyneth says to her friend, “By falling in love with Ben, it feels like I’m saying that I wanted my husband to die.  Like if I’m happy and I WANT this…then it means, I wanted him and his death, and I’m choosing Ben over him by being happy.  It feels like no matter what I chose, I feel like its wrong to be happy.”  (This is a loose quote obviously.)  But then her wise friend replies, “No…its actually not like that.  You haven’t been given that choice of who to love.  You only get to chose or not chose this.”

I’m not sure if that brief and dazzling movie synopsis made sense, but I think about this constantly.

For instance, today a friend and I took our kids to the beach.  It is a gorgeous spring day here, and there was a moment when I saw the sunlight pouring down on sweet Sophie’s little face and I thought, “What a great day, I am so happy to be at the beach!”  And then I remembered that Charlie was not with me.  And it felt hard to feel happy.  It felt like I was saying, “I WANT this and I chose this.”  But I would never have chosen this.  I would never have chosen life without Charlie.  I would so rather be stuck at home with a newborn, deliriously exhausted from lack of sleep, and sick and tired of nursing a baby.   I would rather have Charlie here in my aching arms.  But I haven’t been given that choice.  I can only chose or not chose joy in the sunshine at the beach.   I can only chose or not chose joy in the life before me today.

Every moment of life feels like a Bounce Moment at this point.  The reality of Charlie’s death has propelled me into a whole new life and a whole new set of experiences completely unexpected by me.  Expected and ordained by God…but completely shocking and foreign to me.  It feels like each day is a gift that is being handed to me by God…and I hear Him say, “Will you trust me with this unexpected life.”   Will you walk with me?  Will you take my Plan A?  Will you chose me?  Will you chose knowing me in my Plan A for your life?

And this is true for all of us.  Will we?  Will we chose joy in our unexpected lives?  And more importantly, will we chose God?  I am convinced that no one has the life they always wanted, exactly the way they always wanted it.  And if you have, well then, suffering will change that at some point.  At some point, we are all given something we do not want.   Will we trust our Sovereign God in what He hasn’t given us…so that we can know Him in what He has?

His, Misty