Whatever You Have Done…

The rain pours this morning as I hurry children to the car.  It pours and pours.  We wait at the bus stop, jumping out at the last moment and I am grateful I can do this for them, that they don’t have to get wet.  Michael and I talk about what we would do with 15 billion dollars.  We talk about how we wouldn’t go crazy, just get the necessities, put some in savings and then help the world.  Feed the hungry, clean up the water, make sure all have what is needed.

I get home and pour coffee, grateful for its warmth and readiness.  My eyes fall on the chalkboard that John has written words on in his art-tastic way.

The words there strike me.  Tug at my heart.  Sit on my conscience.

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I know this verse, I know it well.  It’s part of Christian experience, it’s a thing we say…it’s a thing we often do.  But what I wonder is…do we only think of it in terms of the good we do for the least of these?

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When we feed these small ones that God loves, we are feeding Jesus…but how did we let them get so hungry in the first place?

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When we give water to the thirsty, we are giving water to Jesus.  But why are we allowing fellow humans to be thirsty?  How did we let it get so bad?

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We give a homeless person a $20 or a sandwich and we are feeding Jesus.  But why are our brothers and sisters going to sleep outside?

I am thinking about this, about my own response to doing for the least of these and doing for Jesus…I am thinking about how apathy ruins us.  How choosing to do nothing is the same as neglecting Jesus.  How ignoring the problem is ignoring Jesus.  How choosing ourselves means not choosing Jesus.

Because if giving someone a drink equals giving Jesus a drink, then not giving someone a drink means letting Jesus be thirsty.  Because if giving someone food equals giving Jesus food, then keeping our food for ourselves means letting Jesus be hungry.

And that’s not loving like He loved.

This epiphany shakes me this morning and my thoughts turn to Ferguson.

I am grieved over Ferguson.  I am grieved by Facebook and the flippant, the ugly, the choosing sides, the minimizing of what is a tragedy on every side.  The brushing off and ignoring of the fact that there is a much deeper problem running below the surface of our nation.

There is so much more to this than what just happened in Ferguson.  It’s a symptom of a systemic, deeply rooted disease.

And all this vitriol that is directed at those involved is disturbing.

But more disturbing than that is the detachment, the apathy.  I am seeing the weighing in, the choosing sides, I’m seeing opinions. But where is the grief?  Lives are forever changed, a family lost a son, a young man lost his life, a police officer will live in unwanted infamy.  Ferguson is in turmoil.  There should be grief.

But I just see finger pointing, side taking.  I see people who are sick of hearing about it but the crisis is real and isn’t going away.

And all of this…all of this is unto our Lord Jesus.

I know he grieves and I want to choose to grieve with him.

I am praying for Ferguson.  I am praying for everyone in Ferguson.

Just Bring It, November 18th.

It is true that I don’t blog as much as I used to.  There are a handful of reasons:

1. I am unspeakably and ridiculously busy. Daycare, my own family, care of the home, baking, cooking, preparing, errands, school stuff, DoTerra business, crafting, friends and family…there is little time for introspection and writing. Besides, it’s hard to type with children in your lap.
2. I am working through things on the fly. Instead of processing through blogging, the pace of life means that I am processing as I wash dishes, drive to preschool, the space between services at church, as I drift off to sleep.
3. I am not in my chair as much I used to be. I am a true Emerson, go-go-going. I like busy, I like active, I like people and bustling around and doing. I am feeling So Much Better and it is such a Dramatic Difference that I just don’t sit if I can help it. That means less time for writing. It’s the best of the reasons.
4. Here is the worst, or maybe just my least favorite reason. I am in a desert place with God. These are normal, common to the Christian experience, but no fun. I seek and I find, but it is an effort and I feel my relationship with God changing. My revelation of Him changing. Someone said to me recently that you can not receive comfort without the desert place, without the wilderness and here am I.  There’s just not that much to say right now…but I know that there will be.

But today, I have to blog. Because today is Nora’s second birthday. If you’re new to the story, you can catch up by reading literally all of 2012…but especially here and from 2013, here.  Even if only to say, again, thank you to all of you because you have stood with us through it all.

My first meeting with Nora

We’ve come a long way, Nora and I.

Last year, at one year old!

At one year old

In September

Just in September

I’m grateful.

I’m grateful that one day we will be together in heaven with all who have gone before us, AC whose birthday Nora shares…AC would’ve gotten such a kick out of that.

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And Nora’s twin, Asher.

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I’m grateful for all the life we have lived in these two years- we have laughed and cried and laughed some more. We have asked why and we have said that it doesn’t matter why.  We have struggled and we have soared…but most of all…we are here.

Nora

Nora is a joy and a light.  Tenacious and smart, stubborn and mischievous.  She is worth every tear, every ache and pain, every stitch, every drop of blood that fell, every single thing that happened.

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I’m just so grateful.

So yes, bring it on, November 18th. Tears will flow today because it still takes me by surprise.  I almost died.  I had a baby eleven weeks early.  Nora had a twin and he is not here.  Tears are okay.  Grief is okay.  Gratitude is okay.  Joy is okay.  And having all of those feelings at once…it’s more than okay.  All woven together…they make something beautiful and bigger than us.  Something with God’s fingerprints all over it.

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He was with me then.  He is with me now.