Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Day 34


July 10, 2013


Day 34


Five weeks ago tonight…That thought caught me by surprise.  Five weeks is kind of a long time.  Why doesn’t it seem like that long of time has passed?  It feels like it’s been maybe only a few days.  But it’s been five weeks.


Earlier this week I had a few nights where I was waking up cold in the morning.  I could not figure that out.  I have the exact same blankets on my bed as we have always had in the summertime and the ceiling fan is on the exact same speed it always is this time of year.  Then it dawned on me…body heat.


I got another blanket out of the linen cupboard.


Nights have been rough this week, especially – lots of tears and the pain of loss gripping my insides so tightly I can’t catch my breath.  But I’ve had several – at least three – friends message me different nights to tell me that they are especially burdened for me right then.  They want me to know they are praying.  In my darkest moments, He is carrying me.


I’ve had a vision of an hourglass in my head lately – you know, the old fashioned ones with sand running through them.  My kids still get little plastic versions from their dentist at every visit.  The colored sand is supposed to show them how long they are to brush their teeth.  I don’t think they’ve ever been used for that purpose, though.  They just like playing with them and then the gadgets invariably end up at the bottom of the toy box or rolled to the nether regions of the mini-van.  A lot of times I throw them away in frustration after I’ve looked at one stuck underneath the cupboards for a week.  Anyway, I’ve been envisioning this hourglass that represents Paul’s life.  More than that, though, it symbolizes the life that used to be mine.


As a new bride it was full, the pieces of sand slipping slowly into the bottom of the glass.  Forever stretched in front of us. 


Death touched us halfway through our marriage with the loss of our fourth child – miscarriage.  For the first time, Heaven seemed closer.  But death for us was a long way off.  The grains continued to fall.


Sam was born.  Paul cried in the delivery room.  The sand fell faster.  But we didn’t know it.  A new baby had just been born, which meant that a daddy had years.  After all, he has to be there to throw a football and show a boy how to hold a hammer.  He has to talk to him about girls and teach him about driving.  He has to be there to counsel him about college.  He has to teach the baby about God.  Daddies can’t die until they’ve done all those things.


We felt God’s nudge about adoption.  Paul urged me to act quickly and conquer my fears.  Doors flew open, two scared little sisters arrived, and the grains fell faster and faster.


A frenetic period of activity arrived while we counted down the months to our first graduation party.  There was a house to get ready, a kitchen to remodel, a porch to rebuild…the hour glass grew warmer and warmer.


A 20th anniversary arrived in the winter.  We hopped on a plane and flew to Colorado with no children – our first big “adventure.”  We healed from a rough patch, we loved, we explored, we held hands and vowed we’d never fall away from eachother again.  We laughed – oh, how we laughed.  We snapped picture after picture of the mountains, of little towns, of eachother.  We decided this trip was better than our honeymoon two decades before and declared we would, henceforth, travel every year on our anniversary.  The sand moved faster and faster. 


The big day arrived.  We walked across the aisle and handed our firstborn his high school diploma.  The house was perfect, the food was ready, the scrapbooks detailing Will’s life laid out for guests to peruse.  Paul told me he didn’t like my scrapbooks.  Mystified, I asked why.  Then, I looked at him closer.  Tears brimmed in his eyes.  My scrapbooks had made him cry.  Only a few grains of sand remained in our hourglass, but we didn’t know.


The summer stretched out before us, we thought.  We bid our last guest good-bye late that night, stretched out in bed together, and exclaimed, “We did it!”  We talked about the rest of season.  I reminded Paul that there would be NO more construction work until wintertime – no projects, no drywalling, no digging, no roofing.  It was to be a summer of relaxation.  The boys would go to camp, Paul would counsel for one of the weeks (he was excited and wistful at the same time because it would be Will’s final  year of camping), the adoption would take place.  We discussed some dates for our upcoming trip to South Dakota in August.  We fell asleep, not knowing that the hourglass now burned red from the heat of the falling sand, running more and more quickly through the glass.  The grains tumbled over eachother, barely able to keep up with the quick descent.


Five weeks ago tonight arrived.  The last grain slid down the tiny chute.  And then, the hourglass broke, shattering hearts and lives.



Ahh, but there’s another analogy at work now.  I’ve written about my broken and bleeding heart numerous times.  This week my sister-in-law sent me a word picture.  She asked me to visualize God holding my injured heart.  Slowly – oh so slowly – God is taking a needle and with fine, delicate, stitches He is mending that heart.  I can’t see it right now, I can’t feel it right now because my heart is still so battered and wounded.  But bit by bit the master Craftsman intends to repair that broken organ.  It’s going to take a long time and it will forever bear the scars of its great injury.  But just the same, one day it will beat again, healthy and whole.























1 comment:

  1. Oh, Sarah.....both of those are amazing analogies.
    Tears brimmed my eyes and ran down my cheeks in their familiar trails.....shattered, yes.....will be mended, yes also. Psalm 147:3 "He healeth the broken in heart and bindeths up their wound." Hold on to that picture of God holding your heart tenderly and stitch by stitch working on it.
    Thank you for sharing all this.