It’s days like today that make being 8500 miles from “home” incredibly challenging.
My husband and daughter aren’t feeling well, but my son really seems sick. I remind myself of my commitment to serve my family before serving in ministry, so I cancel the 4 meetings scheduled for this afternoon. Admittedly, I feel inconvenienced, which makes me think for a moment that I’m not so great at motherhood.
I remember my exhaustion and that I’ve been up since 2am holding my feverish son so that he could finally sleep. Watching him deteriorate overnight, I contemplated going to the nearest (trustworthy) hospital, which is over an hour away, instead of waiting for the first available doctor’s appointment that we’d scheduled as a precautionary measure two days ago. I spend the morning watching and waiting and exhaling quick prayers.
The doctor’s office is comfortable – although I can’t read the majority the seemingly important signs posted around the receptionist’s desk. The nurse and the doctor speak with one another in a foreign tongue, then turn to me to share in English what I presume are the essentials (I’m reminded of my intention to learn a local language, but with over 11 to choose from I’ve never made a committed effort). My son has pneumonia and an infection in each ear. To keep him out of the hospital, we must go for “percussing” on his lungs (strategically hitting his chest) and breathing treatments with a physiotherapist. I look at my son and take-in his 4-year-old frame visibly weakened by this infection and I know that this treatment will seem like torture to him – feeling equally as painful in my heart. Another quick prayer escapes with my exhale.
Just as my three large cups of coffee and my prayers for even more grace seem to be wearing off – God breaks in to the chaos of the day and puts His Word, just the right words, in front of me:
I will answer them before they even call to me. While they are still talking about their needs, I will go ahead and answer their prayers!” – Isaiah 65:24
I think about the long list of other responsibilities that have tried to occupy my thoughts today: The staff I know are waiting on meetings with me, the repairs needed in the cabins for our current short-term mission team, the emails from friends sitting in my inbox seemingly forgotten or overlooked, the newsletter that needs written, the bills that need paid, the meal-planning and grocery shopping that needs done for our houseguests and the list goes on, growing longer but put aside.
And then I’m overwhelmingly comforted, as I absorb God’s promise that He’s already involved in the details of my life before I even carve out time to sit at His feet and let them spill out of my heart through prayer. Suddenly the distance I feel from all of the things instinctively comforting for me feels bridged – by a love that encompasses me anywhere and everywhere. I breathe in deep and my heart settles into peace, even in the midst of circumstantial chaos.
Wherever you are today and whatever you are doing (or putting aside), find both comfort and courage in knowing that God is passionate about the details of your life – and He’s responding to them even at this moment.
By Amy Riep, author of Deep Roots & Wide WingsLeave a Comment