Sunday, December 16, 2012


i'm not sure what i'm writing here,
i just know i need to write.
as i sat in church this am, holding my precious 6 year old on my lap and singing about sorrow at night, but joy comes in the morning, i really thought i was going to break.
it seems i've broken many times over the last weeks.
 i know of 2 young children just diagnosed with brain tumors, the suicide of a local father, my soon to be sister in law's loss of her young father to a stroke, the mall shooting in my state, the school stabbing in China, and then the New Town tragedy. 
While other people seem to get on with it, i can't seem to move.
i can't get off my knees.
i quietly, surreptitiously steal away a few minutes in the bathroom to cry.
i sneak respite in my room for yet another prayer.
i sit at this computer and pray for each family by name.
i can't move on.
there are mother's arms tonight aching with loss where mine are overflowing.  and i thank a merciful God that they are.
i am racked by the knowledge that life is short.
we know it, but we don't live it.
we are so stupid that we don't grasp that eternal wisdom. we hold onto it with slippery hands only to watch it slide into ignorance when life prattles on.
and then the next tragedy strikes, and we are once again stabbed with the reminder.
i was a junior in high school the year of the Springfield school shootings, just a couple hours away from my own school. with my senior year came Columbine.  while we planned our prom, there were girls like me being put in the grave.
i remember vividly, as i'm sure we all do, where i was when i heard of the tragedy September 11th brought. finally getting a rare chance to sleep in with my newborn son, my first child, hearing the phone ring incessantly begging to be answered and me frustrated at interrupted sleep.  only to hear my mom saying over the machine, "mandy, get up, they're attacking America, they're flying planes into buildings." and holding my precious baby all the day glued to the news.
this day of New Town, i will keep it with me.
i will let it sit in me to remind me how precious our one life is.
and remind me to live that one life well.
i know there are those who question God, who shake their fist at God and wonder why.
i know why.
it's not God.
it's evil.  the enemy of our lives seeks to kill, steal and destroy.
It breaks.God's.heart.
more than you and i can fathom.  but with free will comes choice.
with free will came the fall of mankind.
we invited evil in and he wants to take us out.
this is what i know:
i know God has a plan and a purpose {Jer.29:11}. 
 i know He makes all things new.{Rev. 21:5}
i know 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}
i know that He will carry us, sustain us, and rescue us {Isaiah 46:4}
I know that His love DOES NOT FAIL, His mercy endures {Psalms 136}
I know that my GOD is big enough, loving enough, merciful and gracious enough to sustain us.
I don't know how.
i can only remotely glimpse the pain of these families and that alone is too much to bear. i can't fathom how they will move into tomorrow or the next day, but i know God's grace and peace can settle any storm.
i will carry these moments in my pocket, close to my heart, so that i can pull them out on weary days, on days of irritation and exhaustion and pain.
i will remind myself when my 6 year old, with his huge blue eyes and dark long lashes and 2 front teeth-missing grin, is trying my short line of patience that he is here.  he is here. other 6 year olds are being put in the ground, but he is here.
my 4 year old with his precious cuddles and surprising bright blonde hair and chipped tooth, my 8 year old daughter with her undeniable beauty, her dances, her chatter, her sweetness and my oldest son, my 11 year old, with his freckles, his quiet strength, his mature beyond his years spirit.
they are here.
i don't know how long i have them for.
i don't know the story God has written for us.
it scares me.
it's every parents worst nightmare.
but He is my God and i am His, and this life is but a breath.
this world is not my home.
we are but strangers in this land.
 the cross redeemed me, making my home in heaven.
death has no victory, death has no sting {1st Corinth. 15:55}
while my heart is broken,
and while i ache,
joy will come in the morning.
morning may mean tomorrow, it may mean next year, and it may mean the other side of eternity, but it will come.
i will praise Him in my sorrow, knowing that He hears and records every tear we shed {Psalms 56:8}
i will praise Him because He is still God, He still sits on the throne, and victory is His.
i pray these truths be known in New Town, in the grieving hearts around the world, in the heart of mother's who sit at hospital beds, in father's who cry out, in widows and orphans and the lonely.
i pray that these truths be known to those young men, who have not believed that life is a precious gift.  who have listened to the wrong voice, the enemies voice, that they are worthless and dirty and no good.
i pray the voice of truth speaks louder, that the church will shine brighter, showing these lost souls, who seek to harm because they have lost all ability to feel compassion and love, that there is a God who loves them and wants them to turn form their sins and let Him love them.
I pray this generation of young people would have conviction in their souls, that they have a soul, that they are made worthy, not by who they are or what they do, but by the God who has formed them in their mother's womb and knows every hair on their head and has redeemed them through the cross should they just believe.
 I pray instead of violence, that the evil inside them would be driven out by the love of the Creator.
i am purged for now.
i could write all day, but i am still too broken to put more words down.
He hears my heart and that's enough.
My prayers go with all those who are hurting.
You are loved.


thetwistedruffle said...

this was a good post. you have such a sweet heart. but, i was looking for the mom fail post....i'm really looking forward to seeing how you failed, because i'm over here drowning.

Kathy Charles said...

Hi Mandy-I'm catching up on your blogs. You breathe in and share Gods love as we all should. You will have so many and hugs to you.

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