Saturday, February 7, 2015

When you wake up with a heavy heart

I don't even know where to start. Ray's face swims in my sleepy morning vision and I wonder if I was just dreaming about him. What did you expect? (The nasty Court voice snarls...) He had grey... No almost white... Hair?!
But here is another way to look at it entirely, completely sidestepping that the dear sweet man is now with Jesus: he was given thirty extra freaking years! That's almost a whole me. Thirty years ago they told him: well you have this aneurism and it could be any day now. Any, day, now. 
Don't we get that? We all have an aneurism, we just don't know it. It truly could be any day. As I drove to If: local at my church last night I passed my dear friend's smudge she left on a highway wall. She has been on my mind and nasty Court keeps muttering: 'what kind of idiot has a best friend who is seventy freaking years old!?' As if the answer to life's pain, especially when you are young and dumb still, is to simply shut oneself off to it.
I shush nasty Court one more time. Because I need grey haired and white haired people in my life like I need to breathe.
But that's just it.... I haven't been able to breathe for weeks. I am so tired of the bronchitis from hell. Yet hell has been unleashed all around me, so it's hard to complain about a little bronchitis. A boy I know was freaking burned. Burned. His sweet face, with that wild curly hair framing it has been swimming before me. Poor CJ doesn't understand why I keep hugging him this week. 
Not to mention a dear, sweet woman who just learned she has cancer pretty much everywhere. I so want cancer to be a being with a body and I want to be let loose in a room with it. I don't even need a sword. I've been marathoning 24 I'll just go all Jack Baur on it. 
This woman. This woman and her dear husband came up to us one Sunday and offered to be grandparents to us. Yes. You read that right. The crazier thing was I had been praying for that crazy thing. My parents had just moved out of the state and I was lamenting there weren't cuddly grey or white haired people close by to love my children. I felt like God simply asked me to ask for what I wanted, so I prayed a big, silly prayer: Lord, would you send us grandparents?
A week later, on Good Friday, the husband strolled up to my husband and said they wanted to be grandparents to us. Who does that??? People who listen.
I have decided to keep praying the big prayer for this one. For no cancer. I pray cancer is gone for everyone. 
Did you hear an eight-year-old girl might have just found a cure? She was having dinner with her parents and they asked her how she would solve it and she said she would treat it like a sore throat and get medicine. They laughed. And then they thought. Turns out her parents are cancer research people. They did tests on the effects of antibiotics on cancer cells and found that antibiotics truly do kill just about anything including cancer cells. 
I could barely finish the article. I had a bottle of half-finished antibiotics next to me that certainly weren't doing a darn thing for this bronchitis and it was all I could do to not get in the car and take them to my friend.
Because that's the thing. I'm a doer. This is why I have the hardest time praying. I pace when I pray. I sometimes punch the air. Those that know me are probably snorting. I'm not so much a doer as I am a fighter. Haven't found a fight yet that I didn't want to be in.
This year though. This has been the year for hospital beds. A fighter in a hospital is about as useful as an elephant in an elevator. 
Not to mention it's hard to fight when you can't breathe.
The If Gathering is talking about faith this year. I have faith that the cancer can be completely removed from her. Heck. I saw it this same time last year. My own mother was given a scary diagnosis and I was bracing myself for the worst when suddenly I got the best. 
Here's the thing though: even if he doesn't remove my friend's cancer, he is still good. 
God was good when the boy got burned, and he certainly didn't burn him. The nasty god might have had a hand in that. He was good when Ray fell this week and he certainly didn't strike him. He might have called him. 
One lady told me a story about how when someone's son died they heard when they we're praying that the boy was needed for God's army. My mind wandered then to wondering if little sweet Ray was getting measured for armor. 
God is still good when an entire country is watching a stupid dancing shark on TV and oblivious to the girls being tortured for the sex-trafficking industry right under their noses. God is still good when a man is burned alive by terrorists. We just have no idea the horrors that go on, but he knows and still he is good.
There are hard things in life, death being one of the hardest. He is sitting on his throne saying: "I am making everything new!" 
I really want to see the new Ray. I bet he is golden, ten feet tall, and set on holy fire. Like the white part. Like lightening. 
For now I will get up and pray for his family. I will pray for my friend with cancer. I will pray for the boy who was burned. I will pray for my friend still healing from her car wreck. I will pray. I may punch the air while I do it, but it is the work I have before me that I can do for these things heavy on my heart and so I will.

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