Saturday, October 17, 2009

we are not done yet...

It is hard in the midst of pain to see clearly. I know that when my back has gone out I get very down and wonder if it is all in my head. I wonder if I just do some positive thinking that things will get better. Then I get down on myself for not having done something differently. A little later I lose sight of any thought that things will get better. That is my back - two weeks of pain - every couple of years. Enough to tell me that I need to do the things that I know I need to do and start out right again. (Kind of like flossing after the dentist - lasts for a while.)

The pain for Jake is in his limitations, anticipation of what is to come, frustration over not being normal. He hates being stared and little kids being scared of him, he wants to go to school. I have said all this over and over again - sorry. I guess I am just full of that - we are full of that. All I seem to know how to say today is that "we are not done yet..." We have our exercises, surgeries, steps to go through so that we might move forward. But we are moving forward.

I am not sure if I shared this before but I wrote it in August...

Grief is never far from my heart
ripping, pulling, tugging me down
gripping my heart and squeezing, sadness holds firm

This sadness rips apart my soul, my joy, my song
each moment of everyday this grief surrounds
I've no escape from the torment of this torture

In the midst of all despair, I simply remember
in a moment wherever I am I return
sadness moves toward joy as thoughts come back

My Lord, my God, I remember the vision, the encounter, the promise
I slightly raise my eyes and you are there
your hope, your joy, your arms open wide

In the deepest pain you are still there, restore my soul
turn my tears of sadness to greater joy
restore, renew, engage my soul in your salvation

Watch out all you people, stand back and see
the love of God surrounds me and longs for you
stand here in the midst of this pain, restore me Lord
-------------

Gentle reminders have moved in our direction that each of our stories are so amazingly connected. I have been reminded that community is vital for life and for restoration. We are intimately connected to each other and the stories that we share with one another are stories of hope and grace and presence. Community is far greater than just gathering together and sharing a meal or a story - it is sharing our story - it is breaking of bread as Christ broke bread. At the last supper as he and his disciples shared his last passover meal - it was a deep connection of a time that they were looking forward to. Not just a holiday dinner - it was life being shared together.

Today I received an amazing letter of a story - that connected to our story - the life of a man who's epic crossed our epic - it altered both our stories significantly. I guess I am still taking all of this in as I have been going back of stories that I have received over the last few months - stories of hope, tragedy, grace, heartache, etc. Stories of people who when facing "trials of various kinds" are faced with decisions. These decisions affect us for the rest of our lives.

In the midst of Jacob's story, we still have decisions each day that affect others - family and friends - Though it is overwhelming and though there are still times of confusion, anger, deep sadness - though we still question God, wondering if there could not have been a little greater wisdom in how things transpired - I pray that we will not lose the presence of God in the midst of the trial.

Hope is not the anticipation that all will go according to my plan; hope is the confidence that whatever comes tomorrow the presence of God is stepping with me through each moment.

Here is to hope,

Tom (JK Daddy)

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