Sunday, April 29, 2012


All I know is I'm not home yet
This is not where I belong
Take this world and give me Jesus
This is not where I belong.
--Building 429

Yesterday I visited my bible study group from our old church. The group I'd been a part of the last four years. Four of the five years of being a momma, which means they were the craziest years of my life. So when I tell you it was emotional it's kinda like me telling you that I like to paint. You expect it by now, don't you?

The leader of the group and I have kept in touch so when she mentioned the meeting when the ladies share how God has worked this semester we both knew it was the right time for me to come. For one, the women would be terrified to come in case they'd get called on to share so the group wouldn't be at full capacity. Also we just both knew it was long enough but not too long for me if that makes sense. It felt like the path of least resistance for me-for my first time back to the building where so much life happened, my first time without the possibility of having Sean near. My maiden voyage into the past, our past filled with memories in that church. I have thought a lot about how it might feel to be back there and I imagined a range of emotions. The only thing I didn't anticipate is what consumed me-hope. It is indescribable so of course I rambled on for a good ten (or longer?) minutes telling the girls all about it during my time there. Girls, I'm grateful that you listened. And I love you, every one of you, deeply. You crossed over from daily life to death and now back with me. Even from a distance you communicated love and support beautifully. You are never going to be forgotten and your lives will always be intertwined with mine. Oh, and I loved seeing your kids. My how they have grown in the months since I moved!

So this hope I described/rambled/cried about on Friday...

It's built on who Jesus is and who He has been to me. I've been heartbroken before this, did you know that? I dated one person in high school and he broke my heart. Broken friendships during high school broke my heart. In college our family weathered a storm that broke it again.

He healed it. Not overnight, no. Good Lord you outta hear my family talk about how many tears I cried over the years. At times I thought I felt things too strongly and I asked God to make me numb. He didn't. I asked Him to take the pain away completely. He didn't. But He was with me, healing me, every step I took. So how can I sit in the very room where we all said goodbye to Sean and have hope? I mean, can it be real? How do I know He will help me heal this time?

I know it to be true. He showed me how safe it is to bring heartache to Him when I was sixteen years old. Then again He took care of me at seventeen. And eighteen. And twenty was a biggie for me. How He loved me that year to put up with me and my crying! He's proven Himself to be comforter over and over again. I always list "comforter" first when I've written down the attributes of God because to me, He is. And He never stops, not even when I feel better and start using other things or people to comfort me. That's a secure God, don't you think? One who lets us come to Him even when we've tried everything else first. Even after months of avoiding Him, He's there with arms open wide. It just doesn't get more secure, more hopeful than that. Hope is medicine right now and I still feel bruised. Like I've said I don't know four hundred times I wish for a day without any pain for me or the kids but I'm not giving up because it hasn't happened yet. I'm staying in the game, trying to focus on the hope He's given me. And every night when I turn off the light and lay my head down I ask for more hope the next day and then more after that. He gives it to me, just like His mercy.

Good Lord above thank You for healing me so many times in my life. I'm trusting You to move through the pain in my heart and replace it with You and Your hope, Your love that sustains me. Heal me, Father and heal my family the way only You can.


Allison Jenkins Armstrong said...

Love that song, love you. I'm so happy you are willing to share, Mary. I'm going to keep lifting you and those awesome babies up in prayer. Those happy days are coming. God sees them and so do I. I miss you.

Mary said...

Thank you Allison. You are so encouraging!

Dana said...

I had a few of the moms texting me while you were sharing with them your heart, so I was praying for all of you. Sarah really enjoyed her time with you. It was really good for her. Love you & love praying for you!