The Lord is close to the brokenhearted
and saves those who are crushed in spirit.
Sunday morning my husband and I went to church for only the 3rd time since Amy has been gone. Our church is small, about 50-75 people. It went through a remodeling project a few years ago and we have a permanent area where we sat halfway up on the left hand side. A pew was removed and chairs put in to accommodate those that needed to be in wheelchairs. So we have sat in that row for the last few years.
But not anymore.
We tried the other side and it just didn't feel right. The last two times we went, we sat on the left but closer to the front so I didn't have to see the empty place where Amy should be sitting. My oldest daughter plays the piano a few times a month and so we are able to sit with her and I think we have found our new place.
I can still see Amy in the casket right in front of the podium, with her balloons on either side. Her stuffed animals, flowers, and fairies around her.
It is very hard to be there.
We have many loving people at our church and hugs were given and questions about how I've been. What can I tell them? It has been 5 weeks and I still am struggling everyday. I am trying to look for the good things and be thankful for Amy's life. But I am still broken hearted and crushed in spirit. I see her in every flower, bird and the sunshine out her windows and the chimes that tinkle in the breeze. I was her voice. I would tell her what flowers were blooming, what birds were at her feeder, what the clouds looked like that day. I would tell her how crazy the kitty was acting or if I could see Cocoa from the window. All this, while I was getting her dressed and ready for her day. But No More. We were such a fan of the "Little House" books. I wonder if Laura grieved when Mary went away to college? Did she still describe everything she saw and if so, who to? Did she start writing her thoughts down then? What happened to her voice?
During our worship time one of the songs we sang was Amy's song, "Amazing Grace, My Chains are Gone." I was unable to keep from sobbing and just let the tears flow and didn't even try to sing. Then the scripture passage the pastor taught from was Mark 7:31-37 where Jesus heals a deaf and partially mute man. After Jesus touches the man's ears and tongue He prays to God and He sighs, or as the pastor said, groaned, because it was a deep sigh.
I have not had any Bible training, nor do I know Hewbrew and Greek. I don't consult commentaries. I just read the Bible and try to ask God to give me the wisdom to tell me what He is trying to teach me.
I feel Jesus groaned because He had compassion and sadness for all the people who have special needs in this world. The way a deaf/mute man must have lived back then in the first century in unthinkable. The way others looked at him and talked about him probably has not changed much to this day, though. There is still misunderstanding about the handicapped. Even though Amy was 31, she was very much a child because I sheltered her from anything that would have caused distress. The doctors saw on her chart that she was 31 and then they would look at her and be confused because she was so tiny. Most adults didn't look at her. They would glance and then politely look away. Children were the best and still are because they are so honest. Why is she in a wheelchair? Why can't she talk? They "got it" that even though she can't talk back she understood and they could talk to her. Most of her cousins were great with her. They would talk to her.
Most adults don't know how to act. They can talk to their dog or their cat or even a plant but don't know how to talk to a person who can't talk back to them. It makes them uncomfortable.
Well, I think this Bible passage is teaching us to show love and compassion to those with special needs.To treat them as we would want to be treated. If you see a mentally handicapped person or someone with special needs do you smile and say Hi? Do you try to talk to them? Or do you look away as if they don't exist?
So why didn't Jesus heal Amy? I prayed, entreated, cried, begged? Even though she wasn't healed here on earth, she is healed in heaven. The last verse says it all and I have to accept it as His will.
“He has done everything well.”
Then Jesus left the vicinity of Tyre and went through Sidon, down to the Sea of Galilee and into the region of the Decapolis. There some people brought to him a man who was deaf and could hardly talk, and they begged Jesus to place his hand on him. After he took him aside, away from the crowd, Jesus put his fingers into the man’s ears. Then he spit and touched the man’s tongue.He looked up to heaven and with a deep sigh said to him, “Ephphatha!” (which means “Be opened!”). At this, the man’s ears were opened, his tongue was loosened and he began to speak plainly. Jesus commanded them not to tell anyone. But the more he did so, the more they kept talking about it. People were overwhelmed with amazement. “He has done everything well,” they said. “He even makes the deaf hear and the mute speak.”
I heard this song on the radio coming home today and wanted to share it with you.