Sunday, November 18, 2012

What Matters Most

"He hath shewed thee ,O man, what is good;
and what doth the Lord require of thee,
but to do justly,
and to love mercy,
and to walk humbly with thy God..."
Micah 6:8
(KJV)

My eyes were fixed...
all through the evening.
Each time I looked at the news,
my hopes sank further....
and further...
and further...
until I was literally sick...
to my stomach.

I would walk away from it,
deciding I could bear watching it no more,
only to be drawn back to the computer...
like a magnet...
a little while later....
unable to pry myself loose.

As I sat,
praying for all I was worth,
begging God to do something,
voicing my aggravation, frustration, and fear,
I saw a little boy...
out of the corner of my eye...
 standing in the doorway near me.
Then, I heard a little voice.
"Mama, I don't feel good.
It hurts."

Poor, little Zach had been battling an illness for two days.
His ear had hurt so bad the night before that he was in tears...
crying hard.
Throughout the day, he had steadily become more and more miserable.
Until now, his temperature was elevated to somewhere over 102 degrees.

I looked at his bloodshot, glazed-over eyes...
his rosy cheeks....
his pitiful expression...
and I made a decision.

I turned off the internet.
Shut off the monitor.
Walked away....
from all of the bad news and
all of the disappointment.
And I joined my sweet, fevered boy....
in the next room...
where he had crawled into bed...
and lay in such misery.
As I sat beside him,
praying for God to give him a healing touch,
constantly alternating and applying cool washcloths to his head and back,
I experienced one of those rare moments of enlightenment...
an epiphany of sorts.

Right there.
In the midst of it all.
When I felt completely overwhelmed.
As the shadows of darkness settled down over my soul.
In the stillness,
with the noise turned off...
I heard the voice of God.

It was Him.
I knew it was.

"Child, THIS is what is important.
THIS is what matters most."

It all made perfect sense...
right there in that moment....
holding the wash cloth that had been so cold...
only a moment before....
now alarmingly warm in my hand....
from just a moment of contact...
with the raging fever in Zach's body.

I stopped.

It was a moment of jaw-dropping realization....
that way too much of my energy had been misguided...
that it needed a major change of direction.
That I had spent so much of it in the past weeks,
even months,
worrying over the outcome of something
I was completely powerless to control or change.

How sweet it felt to be needed!
To know that Zach is still young enough
to believe Kevin and I can solve pretty much any problem
that comes across his path.
That God sent us this precious child....
after such a long period of waiting.
That I am, at last, a mother....
of a son....
who has filled my heart and life
with more love and happiness than I will ever deserve.

I care deeply about the big things.
God showed me that night that it is okay to care.
It is okay to pray....
in fact, it is the right thing to do...
to pray...
over the big things.
But, this was bigger.
Zach is more important....
than all of the rest of it put together.

This is what matters most.

This is what deserves the biggest part of me.
my energy...
my focus...
my heart....
my love.

Suddenly, everything came into clear focus.
The lens of my priorities was completely adjusted...
and I saw it.
A scale....
world affairs on one side....
the people I love the most on the other.

All at once, world affairs seemed trifling....
out of reach....
only remotely important...
to me....
at all.

Suddenly, I knew it was okay.
To let that go.
To hand it over to the hands of God.
To forget about it...
knowing He is bigger than all of it....
and He is in control.
To focus my every shred of energy....
on what He has given over to my control.
To do all I can for them.
And let Him handle the big stuff.

How could I worry about national and international affairs
when the child I carried in my womb for nine months,
brought into this world,
and love more than life itself was suffering?

I looked down at Zach...
my heart so full of love
and compassion....
and I thanked God for the moment.
All of it.
Because I was learning something valuable.
He was reminding me....
through the trial...
through Zach's need of me....
that being a wife and a mother
is the greatest earthly gift I could ever be given.

That the moment in front of me...
was precious...
and invaluable.
That Zach would remember this night...
for the rest of his life.
Each time he faces sickness or pain or fever,
he will know that his Mama dropped everything...
to sit by his side...
to soothe his brow,
to give up sleep through the night,
to come back and forth to his bedside over and over,
just to make sure he was okay.
If he lives to be 100,
he will remember that he was raised in a home filled with love....
where he and his needs...
were of utmost importance.

Sometimes, we all need a wake-up call.
Sometimes, we need jarred....
back to reality....
to what is truly important...
in our individual lives.

As we try to solve world problems,
God reminds us that drying tears are what we do best....
that giving hugs,
being there for our husband and children,
keeping love and hope alive in the home,
making sure our "world" is nurtured and tended to....
ever so lovingly,
ever so thoroughly,
are the most important things we will ever do.
That these are the things He requires of us.
These are the things that make our hearts sing....
that make our lives complete....
that fulfill us to overflowing happiness.

After Zach got better,
I thanked God...
from the bottom of my soul....
as I listened to him and his Daddy...
laughing and playing games....
with his action figures....
on our kitchen table.

While the world rages outside,
as our economy teeters on the brink of complete collapse,
I bow my head to the God Who knows what is best....
for me....
and the precious ones closest to me.

I praise Him with all my heart
for reminding me how truly blessed I am,
who is really important in my life,
and what matters most.




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