From the Very Start

I keep You in that hiding place, the one tucked in my heart.
The place that You breathed life into from the very start.

When troubles seem to come my way that I do not understand,
I seek You in my hiding place, for You set my feet on land.

From the time I met You on that glorious day,
I knew You loved me regardless of the times I went astray.

My loving Father, doting Dad, and Creator of my life,
You are my ever-present backbone when facing uncertain strife.

When the world disappoints, and hearts break all around,
In You, my Savior, my hope and worth is always found.

Barrenness has called to me, and tried to declare its name,
But You, oh Father, You lifted my head from devastating shame.

Illness, confusion, and sadness suddenly took hold,
Yet, You poured into me that I’m worth more than gold.

To think that You have walked with me through the years,
It softens my soul knowing that You have carried all of my tears.

I may never understand the pain, desperation, and strife,
Still, I know and celebrate that You are the Giver of Life!

If I had to leave it all, my home, my life, and health,
I would follow You in an instant, for You are more than wealth.

In these days of worldly chaos and things that don’t make sense,
I do not fear what is thrown at me, for You are my defense.

I keep You in that hiding place, the one tucked in my heart,
The place that You breathed life into from the very start.

Jesus, Savior, Loving God, and Maker of us all,
In You, I find great peace and joy, in You, I do not fall.

I keep You in that hiding place, the one tucked in my heart,
For You, oh God, You have carried me from the very start.

Psalm 139: 13-18

For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.  My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be. How precious to me are your thoughts, God! How vast is the sum of them! Were I to count them, they would outnumber the grains of sand – when I awake, I am still with you.

Barren Path {I AM}

I walk along this barren path with bitter, heavy steps.

My skin feels parched from this dry walk.  My tongue lay thick in my mouth.

“Where, oh where, are you my Lord?” my voice screams without a sound.  “You are not here.  You do not care.  You are nowhere to be found.”

This painful walk.  This mournful way.  This path does not seem right.

I am forgotten, misunderstood, and full of dread for the night.

With each step, my bones crack, and my heart lays deep in my chest.

I am weary, tired, and painfully torn.  I desperately long for some rest.

“Where, oh where, are you my Lord?” my voice screams without a sound.  “You are not here.  You do not care.  You are nowhere to be found.”

The ground beneath laughs at me.  It scorches me to the bone.

This barren ground.  This painful walk.  I am completely alone.

 “Where, oh where, are you my Lord?” my voice screams without a sound.  “You are not here.  You do not care.  You are nowhere to be found.”

And then, at once, I look up. The light is far too bright.

I squint my eyes, cover myself, and wonder.  “Where is the night?”

“Where is the night that envelopes me?  Where is the darkness that won’t leave?”

This barren path.  This mournful walk.  It clings to me so tight.

“I AM.”  I hear you say.  “I AM.”  

You say again.

This is the sound that chased after me; the one that would not leave.

This voice.  This gentle, but intense one, that stirred my heart to believe.

“I AM in the sunrise, wind, and rain.  I AM in the sunset, joy, and pain.”

“I AM the One who first knew you, and the One who wrote your days.”

“I AM the Weaver, Storm Creator, and Calmer of the Seas.”

“I AM the One who set your feet upon this barren path.  Yet, I AM the One who will avenge you, my child, with great wrath.”

This barren path.  This parched, dry walk.  This journey of which I’ve known.

It does not feel dry anymore. I no longer feel alone.

For my Father,the Great I AM, walks me through the days.  He fills the air, and colors my view with songs of joy and praise.

My steps are light.  My heart leaps up.  I dance on this fruitful land.

For my Father, the Great I AM, holds me in His Heavenly Hand.

“I AM.”  I hear you say.  “I AM.”  

You say again.

Thank you Lord, for guiding me, and setting my soul upon this terrain.

Thank you, Father, the Great I AM, for capturing my  heart once more.  Thank you, Father, the Great I AM, for things that are in store.

You set my feet upon this walk.  This barren path is long.  Yet, You quench each thirst. You pad each step. You caress me with a new song. 

You breathe hope into my lungs.  My heart leaps at Your Great Name.  

Yahweh.  Father.  Loving God.

For You are the Great I AM.

 

Majesty (my attempt at a poem)

While driving the new little one to the doctor the other day, my mind started to wander a bit about the place I’m at in life.  I’m 41-years-old, and am raising very young children.  I thought about some of my friends my age who are starting to watch their children prepare for high school graduation, or drive a car, or even start their careers, and all I could think of is how my life is about half-way over and I’m just now in the beginning years of raising a family!

The realization that I will be rearing my children well into my mid-to-late 50’s is quite humbling, and a little concerning.  I get told I look young for my age, and most days I can keep up with the kids, but I cannot escape the years that have already been behind me, nor can I escape the years ahead.  I find it easy sometimes to think about what I could be doing in the last half of my life.  Preparing for retirement, traveling, down-sizing to a great little loft downtown, etc…are all things that have crossed my mind.

Just as soon as my mind starts to walk down that path of “what if”, I quickly come back to the reality of what my life is at this moment, and what the Lord has given me.  Below is little poem I jotted down after thinking all of this through.  It was laid on my heart, and although I’m not a poet or even that skilled at writing poetry, it serves the purpose of speaking out loud my contentment with the life I have.

Majesty

I’ll probably never climb a mountain or swim in the deepest sea.

I’ll never build a mansion or have my name lit up on a marquee.

I probably won’t explore a jungle or fly off into the galaxy, but the Lord, my Father, has proven Himself time and again to me.

I may not ever paint a masterpiece or solve a great mystery.

I won’t carry around many riches nor discover what the eye has yet to see.

I won’t be known for perfection and struggle at times with humility, but when I think of my Lord, my Father, how great You are, my heart screams Majesty.

Thinking of all I will not do or things that won’t happen for me, all I have to do is think of You  – Abba Father, Daddy, Lord – and my heart screams Majesty!

New Year’s Road

Taken with my iphone as I rode my bike in a 150 mile ride.

This past year was one full of discovery for me.  Through blogging, I have been reminded that everyone truly has a story to tell.  We are all story-tellers in our own ways.  Art, in its purest form, also speaks volumes of insight and revelations about the world we are living in.  Some speak through poetic ramblings and short-stories.  For others, the lens of a camera captures images that their eyes first took notice of.  Each photograph tells a story.  Writing really has become my therapeutic release, my story-teller, my window to the world, my humbling remembrance of how blessed I am, and an extension of the yearning to live out my faith in Christ.

I continue to learn that  parenting is an art form.  Like most artists, parents don’t just figure it out with one stroke of a brush.  Mistakes are made, and often, we are our own worst critics,  Parenting is also something that love and passion is poured into.  I have yet to meet an artist who is not passionate about his or her masterpieces.  Children are the masterpiece that we are always working on, and for that, I am grateful for “do-overs”, grace, and the simplistic forgiveness of children.

Throughout this year,I have been made keenly aware of the tightrope we all walk when it comes to protecting children in our own backyards, and around the world.  Not to sound cliché, but they really are our greatest resource for the future.  Through this blog, I have been able to express my deepest desires for my children, and for others as well.  I have also been able to connect to the child I once was.

I began this road of writing because I felt I had a story to tell.  I felt I needed to speak of infertility.  I knew there were others out there suffering from the sadness that comes when the desire for children is not fulfilled.  I also felt that my story of barrenness includes the incredible journey that is adoptive parenting.  I may stray from time to time from the topic of infertility with the posts I write, but it is never too far from my thoughts and my heart.  I am deeply compassionate about others who continue to search for answers, and who live daily with the unfulfilled longing for children.  I hope my words will encourage each of them to believe in joyful beginnings and happy endings.

I am not sure what the Lord has in store for the road I will walk in 2013.  Will I be inspired to venture into other areas of writing?  Will there be heartbreak and heart-joy in this next year?  Will some doors open while others shut?  There is no way to tell what is destined to happen, but my faith in the Script-Writer of our lives is greater than the unknowns of the future.

May this New Year’s Road lead you all to delightful discoveries, faith-building experiences, and life-affirming moments that bless your sojourn in the world.

Dance before His Throne

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the girl I was before my hysterectomy. My surgery was not just another one chalked up in the history of who I am. It was a life-changing event. It was something that tarnished my rose-colored glasses view of the world.

I had not been a stranger to the hospital or illnesses before. At age two, I underwent an emergency appendectomy. At age seven, intestinal adhesions caused a blockage calling for another emergency surgery. But, the hysterectomy was a far more intense and dire experience.

This surgery affected everyone around me. It was not just about recovery. It was more than that. It was a game changer. My parent’s lives were instantly changed by it. My life, of course, was too.

Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed life. There was still laughter, new experiences, and friendships. But, after the surgery, sadness stowed itself away in me unbeknownst to many people.

Prior to this surgery, I was a dancer. By the time I was eleven, I had danced for eight years.  I danced competitively and dreamt of performing on Broadway. My ultimate goal was to be a choreographer. However, something changed in me following the surgery. My body did not move the same way. It took more effort. My muscles had been emaciated from the infection and, to be honest, my spirit had been dampened by it as well.

Within a few years after my recovery, I quit dancing. I don’t know why really. My dance teacher told me many years later that she believed if the surgery would have never happened, I could have been a professional dancer. She too thought that it changed my body’s ability to move and nearly wiped me clean of the strength I once had.

So, here I am now at age forty still thinking of the days I danced. I’ve decided to write a poem to the little girl I once was whose dreams of dancing went to the wayside. I know that when my walk on this Earth has ended, I will be dancing before the Lord.

Dance away, little dancer. Dance before His throne. Dance for all the pain you have once known.

No longer taste the salt in your tears. Feel the movement taking away all of your fears.

Dance your life into a story, and let it be all for His glory.

Point your toes with every ounce of grace. See the expression of love on His face.

Dance away, little dancer. The one who longed to know the answer.

The answer to why that fateful time came.  The longing for a life that would never be the same.

Your life interrupted with no fault of your own. In a single moment, your life’s tapestry was sewn.

Welcome home, little dancer. For now, you know the answer.

His love is your melody. Dance your praise for eternity.

You’ve danced your life into a story. And, it all has been for His glory.