Love Does

With Every Breath that I am Able…

She walked up with a smile on her face as our paths crossed for the first time.  We each knew of the other, though we never met in real life.  It had to be surprising to see the swelling of tears in my eyes… but her gentle words comforted my reeling heart…  she hugged me and said, Good moms cry sometimes ~ you’re a good mom.

There is no way she could have known what my last hour had just held. Two tiny girls who mean the world to me fell apart in a pain that I will never fully comprehend.  It’s birthday week and their little hearts carry heavy burdens.  And often times this heart of mine bears the brunt of their breaking.

I have no words to comfort the depth of pain that questions how we all ended up in this place.  There’s no denying I wasn’t the mommy who brought them into this world… yet for some reason I’m the one who now leads them through these storms.  With each year their wonderings go deeper and the answers are hard to swallow.  They remember bits and pieces but it’s not enough to quench the ache they feel.  The hardest thing I’ve ever faced is holding my precious children and saying, It’s not supposed to be this way…

Oh don’t get me wrong, there is beauty and laughter and oh so much joy in our life… but some days the past rears its head like a jack-in-the-box whose handle has been turned one time too many… and we all fall down.

It’s what we do then that matters most.

I’ve heard it said, the place of deepest pain is the place of the greatest potential for transformation…  one might even hope healing.

As I hold these tiny hearts, wrapped in long legs and brown eyes, I fully own that I cannot fix what grieves them.  I will not paint a picture that glosses over their pain.  I can pull together every piece of my shattered heart and know that I have exactly what they need in this moment… to be present and know… it’s not about me.  I will sit and hold near, my arms have room for both the joy and the pain… and I remind them, it’s ok to be sad… I will never understand how hard this is for you… but when you are sad I want you to know I want to be sad with you.  You don’t have to take care of me… it’s not your fault. Please my sweet girl, let me be sad with you.  And when it feels so hard that you can’t even breathe….

Run to Jesus.

Jesus be near.

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It was the third day this week we’ve had to sit in a bath and wash our day away before dinner is even on the stove.  I’ve sat down countless times to try to write… but the truth is, this year has much more that I don’t want to remember than I do.  I’ve re-read my last blog, day, after day, after day for the last week.  There’s nothing like your own words to remind you of his goodness.

After it all settled down and my little loves bounced back, I walked out the front door to catch my breath.  It is there that I let my guard down… tucked in closely on another’s empty porch…the floodgate opens and my tears feel endless.

I grapple in my own heart with fully believing You are good, but dear Lord you do not feel kind…

I’m humbled by my own brokeness… the belief that his love should equal no pain.  The truth is his love endured the greatest pain, all for the sake of the glory on the other side.  He never promised surrender would be easy…

But maybe – just maybe – I can believe the work he is doing in and through us is worth more than the pain free days I long for.  Maybe, on the other side they will see clearly his faithfulness every step of the way. His pursuit. His redemption thread of grace upon grace.

I barely see through my fuzzy eyed contacts, ruined by the salt of tears.  But I watch my three little ladies fast asleep and believe tomorrow holds new mercies.  I have seen his kindness in the gentle hug of a new friend who spoke words that pierced my tender heart… as if God himself wanted to remind me, I am not alone.

Though I may not always have the words…

With every breath that I am able –  I will sing of the goodness of God.

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