We ended up in the Healing Garden in the last chapter of the story. Since then (two days after surgery), life in real-time has moved to 6 weeks post-surgery. I’m sure I’ve lost some of the details, but I’m going set down as many as I can remember, because I need them. These past couple of weeks have reminded me that life and all its chaos will suck away every bit of wonder and joy from all I’ve been through if I let it.
I’m as guilty as the next person of reading the Old Testament, looking at the Israelites walking through the Red Sea, following Moses to the mountain, walking into the wilderness, eating heavenly food, then whining about going back to slavery in Egypt, and to comment, “Stooooopid Israelites! How can they even THINK about running back into slavery after everything they’ve seen God do! Are they idiots?”
And God replies, “ok big boy – let’s see how you do… We’ll walk through pre-surgery, where I’ll move every obstacle aside, then we’ll go through the surgery where I’ll allow the whole procedure to be completed and have everything go as perfectly as it can, and to top it off, I’ll give you a recovery that is so smooth that you’ll think the surgery never happened. I’ll open the path before you, walk with you through it, and be the guard at your back to keep and sustain you. Now, six weeks later, what do you have to say?…”
And, after looking honestly at myself and my attitude over the last couple of weeks, I say nothing. When I see what a roller coaster of emotion Vicki has had to put up with, when I see the turmoil and stress in my head (mostly of my OWN making) and when I see the lack of trust in my behavior, I say nothing.
“I place my hand over my mouth.” – Job, who is a LOT wiser than me.
There are many, many reasons that God tells us over and over to “forget not.” To “remember.” To “recall” and “rehearse” and to “teach” and to “write them on the door of your home” and to “place these stones so that when others see them and ask ‘what do these stones mean?’, you can TELL them.”
But the reason that matters to me? I’m a dumb sheep. I’ll only see the here and now, and get so wrapped up in it that all the glory of past days will seem as a mist – gone and not remembered. Unless I teach myself to see it with my waking eyes, to keep it in front of my confused mind, and to recall it as I lay down to sleep, I’ll forget it ALL. And I have. And I do. And I’m saddened and ashamed of that.
So, I will continue to write down the story. And I’ll continue to remember the story.
Other things will be let go – they simply don’t matter anymore. I’m afraid that sometimes when people ask things of me, the answer will be, “sorry, but no.” I’m not going to head for seclusion, and I’m certainly not going to become a person who never lifts a finger to help his brother or sister. But I am going to find where the boundaries are. This is way too important to allow chaos to drive it away.
I am determined to live wrapped in the wonder of God. I’ve been given new life (physically) to match my new life in Christ. And I have a limited amount of time, in His grace – I certainly can’t waste it with things that don’t matter or that clutter my head and take my focus away.
“Sometimes, your second life is even better than your first one.” – Stick, from the end of “Electra” (slightly misquoted, but there it is)