Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Gifts Returned

I sit on the sun-warmed pier and watch these two blond-haired, blue-eyed boys gathering rocks on the lake's edge and throwing them into the murky water. I have often looked at them and wondered what I did to deserve such beautiful, funny, sweet children. It only takes a moment for me to realize that I did nothing. I do not deserve them. They are gifts.

On days like Saturday, where Calvin contradicted every comment that came out of my mouth and Hobbes quickly picked up on his brother's whiny mood and joined right in, I still know somewhere in my core that they are precious. As soon as they are asleep, no matter how bad the day has been, I look at their small bodies and wonder how I have managed to be angry at so fragile a thing. They are gifts.

I cannot hold them too tightly. He who gave them to me knows better than I how to care for them. But I do not want to let go. It is my greatest battle. They are mine. I bore them. I feed and dress and comfort them. But they are not mine, not really. Because I cannot always be there to care for them, I have to entrust them to Someone who can, and I have to teach them to trust in Him. They are gifts. And the only proper way to receive them is with open hands. But that is so very, very hard to do.

I have been thinking about this giving back this week, as the blood flows and a gift that had barely begun to be mine is returned to the Giver. I do not want to give it up, but I am trying to be willing. But what if he asked it of one of these two, the ones I already know, the packages I have opened to find something more beautiful and creative and joyful than I ever could have imagined? I don't know. How did he do it?


onjoyhappinessandsam said...

Aw. I am so sorry for your loss. I wish there was more that I could say.

Rachel said...

i'm continuing to pray for you and want to send you my love right now. that was so beautiful. i'm thankful the Lord is giving you some space to reflect and sit in it.

Farrah said...

I'm sorry if I didn't give you room to tell me the other day on the phone. I'm sorry if I have become the kind of friend who you can't tell these things to, these things that are real and emotional for you. I have been so wrapped up in my anxiety and fear that it is hard for me to see much else. But, I am sorry.
I look at Lucas and think these same thoughts all the time. I have had to give one back and I hope not another. But if He asked for Lucas back now, He might as well take me too. I don't know how God did it. I think that is one of the reasons Good Friday services are so intense for me. I think of Jesus dying on the cross and God watching his son whom He could save but instead gives up to save us all. So intense for me.
Thanks for your honest thoughts and emotions. I do love you.

Missy said...

I will pray for you. I am so sorry for your loss.

He could have given nothing greater for us. I don;t know how He did it either.

Kate said...

I am so, so sorry to hear of your loss. Please know that you are in my prayers.

There's a beautiful book called 'A Sacred Sorrow' by Michael Card which talks about the importance of lament in our worship. It has made me feel connected to a story much bigger than my own and helped me come to terms with some of my own grief.

But books don't solve everything, obviously, so take some time to do what you need to do. Cry. Be angry. Walk in the mountains and shout. Grieve. Allow yourself to feel His mysterious love.

You're in my thoughts.

TwoSquareMeals said...

Thank you, dear friends I know and those I don't, for your prayers and love.

Catherine said...

Oh 2square - I'm so sorry. I'm on vacation right now (and in a room with a sleeping toddler) or I would call...

Marie said...

I'm so sorry, thanks for letting me know.

I think many of this have had this particular sorrow. Thank you for directing me to the post, it has been many, many years but it would good to read and a beautiful way to consider it all.