Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Blessings

Another month has passed.  The 8th came and went. I remembered in my heart, but nothing was said. On the 10th Marissa was 4 months old. On the 21st Will will be 11 months. Another little one will be joining us in March. Will will be a "big" brother. Such wonderful news, it brought tears to my eyes, as most things do these days! 
 
My last post was titled, "I have a song." I think the Lord was preparing my heart for the music of this month.  

A few weeks ago I started going through the abundance of music we have collected over the years. I needed the shelf unit that our music was stored on to use in another place in our home. So I decided it was time to sort through all the music as most of it is not mine anyway! Piano music, solo music, accompaniment music, music from my childhood, the kids beginning piano books, and old hymnals. So many old hymnals! I think one of my girls collected them at one time. I was glancing through one of the hymn books and I noticed a lot of the numbers circled. For a few minutes I wondered why and then I realized it was the hymnal I used with Amy every night before bed. We would sing a hymn together before we prayed and told her goodnight. For some reason I had blocked that from my mind.  The pain that shot through me on remembering it was almost too much to bear. I could not believe that I forgotten it was a nightly ritual. I also was grieved because it is not a ritual anymore. With Amy's death some of the music in my life faded away. 
As I continued to sort through the stacks of books and sheet music I had the desire to play again. I  took piano lessons for five years as a child  but I hated it! As with a lot of things in life, when I became an adult I regretted the fact that I quit and have tried off and on to practice again. I have lost much of what I learned through lack of practice. 
I actually sat down at the piano and plucked out a tune. It felt good to feel music(if you can call it that) come from my fingers again.

Three weeks ago Emily was to sing a special number for morning worship. We had Vacation Bible School that week and she was a teacher and also working her job, so she hadn't had time to pick out a number to practice. I was in the garden Friday evening picking green beans and humming the song "Blessings."  I had sung this song in church twice and my greatest hardship at that time was sleepless nights because of the pain from my neuropathy. Wow! If I only knew the pain that was to come from a broken heart of a child's death. As I was humming I felt like God was telling me to sing it on Sunday for Emily. I did my best to argue with myself (or God?) that I wasn't ready yet. I haven't sung a solo since Amy died and I really questioned if I would ever be able to sing by myself again.  I was able to find the CD with the background vocals and I practiced it. Emily came home from work and I told her what I was thinking. I practiced it a few times on Saturday while Emily was at work and when she came home she helped me. The next to last stanza of the song says, 
"What if my greatest disappointments
Or the achings of this life
Is the revealing of a greater thirst this world can't satisfy" 

 I could never make it through "achings of this life" without my voice breaking with pain. I decided that I would never be able to sing this without Emily's help. She sang part of the song for me and some of it we sang together. She sang the next to last stanza above and I was able to sing the last stanza by myself,
"And what if trials of this life
The rain, the storms, the hardest nights
Are Your mercies in disguise"

 Although I didn't lift my eyes the whole time I was able to make it though the song without tears. I still don't know if I will ever be able to sing by myself but it is a beginning.

Another special thing happened just this past week. I have been taking care of Marissa quite a lot. About 8 hours a day, 4-5 days a week. I've started talking a lot to her as I used to do with Amy. About anything and everything that is going on at the time or whatever comes to my mind. I've also started singing to her.  I have hummed a lot since Amy died but not actually singing out loud while I'm working around the house like I used to. I guess having another little person who is not able to talk yet has made me start to communicate with her like I used to with Amy. I used to sing a lot to Amy. I liked to think that I was singing "with" her, because I knew that she was singing in her mind also. Now Marissa Amy just looks and looks at me and then she'll smile. I know that she will sing "with" Grandma someday.  
A few days ago I sang "Itsy Bitsy Spider" for the first time with her and she giggled when I tickled her. I burst into tears. So much joy, but still so much sorrow of missing my sweet Amy. 

Our butterfly bush outside our kitchen window has had constant visitors. Here are a few pictures I was able to capture. We have Swallowtails but this was the first Monarch I have seen in a long time.






"Blessings" by Laura Story

We pray for blessings
We pray for peace
Comfort for family, protection while we sleep
We pray for healing, for prosperity
We pray for Your mighty hand to ease our suffering
All the while, You hear each spoken need
Yet love us way too much to give us lesser things

'Cause what if Your blessings come through raindrops
What if Your healing comes through tears
What if a thousand sleepless nights
Are what it takes to know You're near
What if trials of this life are Your mercies in disguise

We pray for wisdom
Your voice to hear
And we cry in anger when we cannot feel You near
We doubt Your goodness, we doubt Your love
As if every promise from Your Word is not enough
All the while, You hear each desperate plea
And long that we have faith to believe

'Cause what if Your blessings come through raindrops
What if Your healing comes through tears
What if a thousand sleepless nights
Are what it takes to know You're near
And what if trials of this life are Your mercies in disguise

When friends betray us
When darkness seems to win
We know that pain reminds this heart
That this is not, this is not our home
It's not our home

'Cause what if Your blessings come through raindrops
What if Your healing comes through tears
And what if a thousand sleepless nights
Are what it takes to know You're near

What if my greatest disappointments
Or the achings of this life
Is the revealing of a greater thirst this world can't satisfy

And what if trials of this life
The rain, the storms, the hardest nights
Are Your mercies in disguise



Thursday, July 9, 2015

I Have A Song

June has seemed to fly by and we are already in July. Yesterday was the 27th month of missing Amy. Little things have brought so many tears to my eyes the last couple of weeks. Saying good bye to my parents was extremely hard. I'm not sure when I will see them again. Their health is poor and they still continue to live on the farm I grew up on, where they have lived for 55 years and in the same house my dad helped his father build when he was 15. Daddy turned 85 while I was there and Mama will be 85 in September. They do not have anyone come in to help them. My dad did agree that it was time to contact an agency. I try not to worry, but put my faith in our Lord that He will give them wisdom and strength. I took so many things for granted when I was a child. One was sunsets. Surrounded by mountains for the last 38 years, I have missed sunsets like this one.

It was so good to see the grand kids again! They had grown in just the few short weeks I had been away. As had my garden and flowers, too! We had lots of rain, sunshine and heat, perfect for growing. Something else was new.....a kitten. We named her Emmie.
See the M on her forehead? Not a very original name, I know.        

We wanted to get a dog this spring since Tipps died last fall. The humane society rejected us since we weren't going to keep it inside the house, so spring passed.  I had been praying about it, knowing that God had the right dog for us. So just a week after I was home I saw an ad in the paper for lab puppies. I called and we now have a puppy! Bill named her Ebony. She is so much fun, a little bit of work, and torture on my flowers!
 Ebony, our newest addition at 7 weeks, with our oldest cat, Bilbo, 15 years.

Little things with the babies have reminded me of Amy. Will has started to eat cut up food. He sometimes hides some of it in his cheeks. Amy used to do that. Marissa stares up at the ceiling. What does she see up there? Amy used to do that too. I think she could see things that we couldn't. Like angels. Maybe babies do too. Doesn't the Bible tell us that each little one has an angel watching over them?    Matthew 18:10

I never thought I would be sterilizing baby bottles again, but I am. I have watched Marissa Amy for two days now. Her mommy went back to work full time on the 4th of July.  As I held her yesterday and rocked her, in the chair I rocked all my babies in, I told her that she would have loved her Aunt Amy's room. She would have loved all the flowers and butterflies and the fairy that hung from the ceiling. I started weeping for all the things she will never know about her Aunt. Part of me wished I had kept Amy's room exactly the same, but the other part of me knows that we did the right thing by moving our bedroom downstairs into her room.
I shared my thoughts with Tess when she came to pick Mari up.... my sorrow that Mari will never know the sweet aunt that she was named after. In one simple sentence Tess made me realize where my heart thoughts should be dwelling. She said, "Marissa, hopefully, will know her someday." Yes, that is what I need to think of when I start feeling blue....the future. I need to be in prayer now for my grandchildren, that they will come to know the Lord at an early age and that I will be the kind of grandma that He wants me to be. Amy was what kept me close to God, because she was so needy and yet so pure and Christ-like. She is not here, but my grand kids are and they need me!
Marissa Amy has grown so much! I love her chubby legs.                                                                 
Will and Laura came to visit yesterday and we decided to get a little fresh air. 

This past Sunday a beautiful young mother sang a song I had never heard before. It really touched my heart and blessed me.  I looked up the video and it was filmed at a place Tess and I had visited in Israel many years ago. Here is the link to it.


I have a song
I Have a Song
Shannon J. Wexelberg

When the world is up against me
When it seems I’ve lost it all
And my back’s against the wall
When my heart’s grown dry and empty
When the life that I had planned
Is slipping through my hands
I hear sweet music rise above it all
And when it seemed my hope had ended, I was wrong

I have a song
And I’m singing to my Savior
Singing to the One who set me free
I have a song
And my heart will ever praise Him
This world can never take this joy from me
When all else is gone
I have a song

When I cannot see tomorrow
When the questions flood my mind
Looking back on wasted time
When my soul is full of sorrow
When the pain won’t go away
And such brokenness remains
I join the music rising far above it all
It’s an anthem to my true and faithful God

 I have a song
And I’m singing to my Savior
Singing to the One who set me free
I have a song
And my heart will ever praise Him
This world can never take this joy from me
When all else is gone
I have a song

I sing because I’m happy
I sing because I’m free
For His eye is on the sparrow
And I know He watches me!

 I have a song
And I’m singing to my Savior
Singing to the One who set me free
I have a song
And my heart will ever praise Him
This world can never take this joy from me
When all else is gone
I have a song


I, too, have a song. This is not how I planned for my life to be and sometimes my soul is still full of sorrow and the pain won't go away, but....
I have a song. I'm singing to my Savior, singing to the One who set me free, and my heart will ever praise Him. 
I have a song.