Monday, February 11, 2013

It's Just A Song

I sit here on day four of the great "Snow In of 2013" here in Boston, listening to the music on my iPhone and being grateful that my bored 6 year old is in bed and we can look forward to getting back to the normalcy of life for a busy single mom and a six year-old who loves Kindergarten as much as candy.

As I stared off into the abyss in front of me a song started playing into my ears.  It was the song I played during my husband's funeral service.  It was quite unorthodox to play in the sanctuary of a stuffy, moderately legalistic Baptist church but I didn't care at the time and I still don't.  It was given to me on a CD of music meant to lift me up in such a dark time, from my husband's faithful accountability partner and friend, J.  I remember listening intently to the songs that he brought me, stretching for any message, subliminal or otherwise that would help me understand my husband more. I grasped for any tiny straw that would help me make sense where to me there could be none.  He was gone and nothing I thought, said or did would change it.  The finality of God's sovereign will had been rubber stamped on my life.  No matter how I wished I could erase it, the indelible mark was there for all to see. 

The song was so powerful to me.  It was a plea, no a commitment to praise God when all seemed hopeless.  I tried, I really tried but in all honesty, I didn't want to.  I wanted Him to give back to me what He had, in my eyes, stolen and I knew that He wouldn't although I recognized that He could. 

Months went by of me trying to make sense of my life and find a balance. It was like trying to learn how to tightrope walk with Rollerblades on. The more I fought for control the more the rope swayed.  It was one day that I just decided to fall off, convinced that the learning wasn't worth it.  That was when I discovered that I was carrying Alex.

During my carrying I had to once again be faced with a God who not only stole my husband but sought to seemingly exact His revenge on my disobedience for having dared to look Him in the face and tell Him to "kiss off". I was dutifully fulfilling my obligations and being allowed to be held accountable for my actions, amidst my temporary insanity.  I can't remember a time when I was so amazingly down-trodden.  I was like a trampled rose on the sidewalk on a hot Summer day.  Left to wilt through the heat of a Key West Summer and my sadness I went to vacuum my car one day when the song came on the radio.  The words pierced my heart.  Before I realized what was happening I was on my knees next to my car with the driver's side door open wailing aloud with the car wash vacuum hose in hand. 

I had to acknowledge finally that God had not done anything to me at all.  Life has trials, sorrow, grief, and loss.  No one ever promised us that we'd get through our existence without it. In fact, quite to the contrary. The book of James in the bible assures us that we will have trials and of many kinds.  It is what we do with the trial that makes all the difference.  No, I chose my path and now I had to walk it all the way out.  It just didn't look like I thought it would.  In those moments of brokenness I turned back to see what could be left of my torn relationship with God.  I haven't been sorry for anything ever since. 

Just this month, in almost 4 years, is the first time that I have been able to listen to this song for what it is and see proof of hope in the lyrics. Where I used to be reduced to tears, I find clarity and assurance.  It doesn't haunt me any more.  It steadies me.  I hope you enjoy it.