Wednesday, August 15, 2012

My Deliverer

When I speak to first time expectant moms I can't help but think, ignorance is bliss.  But after experiencing it three times I was terrified of what lie ahead.  I know births are supposed to be easier the more children you have, but that had not proven true for me.  I pleaded with God.  Please God, could you have mercy on me, just this one time?  Must I always have to struggle through some deep spiritual lesson at the birth of each of my children?  I can't do this . . . but somehow I must.  Cries from the soul pierced heaven's realm. 
In desperation I asked God for a verse, something to cling to and focus on during the labor.  As I read the Scriptures that morning Zephaniah 3:17 jumped off the page and I knew that was my answer.
"The LORD your God is with you, he is mighty to save.  He will take great delight in you, he will quiet you with his love, he will rejoice over you with singing."  (Zeph. 3:17)

As I ran that verse over and over in my mind God came close.  Really God?  I have not dropped off your radar?  You are with me?   I know in my head that God never leaves his own, but my heart felt dejected . . . distant.
I kept rolling it over in my mind.  He is mighty to save, mighty to save, capable, powerful enough to see me through no matter what I am destined to face.   As I neared the delivery of my fourth child I needed to be convinced that God could truly deliver me, in a 'help me I'm overwhelmed' sort of way. 

I've always struggled with believing I was in God's good graces.  To think that God would delight in me was a distant concept.  I was anxious and discouraged about many things, and the thought of God quieting me with His love was like a soothing balm to my soul.  Yes, He rejoiced over me with singing.  I wasn't sure I really believed it but I wanted to.

Then as Summer Faith was born the grace of God washed over me in full force, the gentlest and shortest birth I have ever experienced.  I was in awe of God's mercy.  He heard my cry and most of all, I knew His personal touch in my life.   The Deliverer stepped into my dilemma.
My four children were each born in a different season, but Summer seems to be of a different cloth and appropriately named.  Sunshine spills out of her life, this child so rarely sad.  She delights in making others smile.
(Summer/summer, Tyler/fall, Ivy/winter, Heather/spring
Grandpa calls her a pistol and Nana tells me that this child will not be bound by the box.
For several years she had a passion for being an astronaut.  She is not content with living an ordinary life and would rather spring right off of planet earth and discover new worlds.  Lately she's decided to be a composer.  I'm curious to see what her ambition will be when its time to graduate from high school. 
This week she has taken to running laps around our tiny back yard, religiously doing her situps and pushups, all of her own initiative.  She has a natural bent towards repetitive tasks and self discipline which she carries over into her spiritual life.  I came into her room to talk to her one day and she was lying flat on her face.  I thought something was wrong and started to speak.  She shushes me and declares, "mom, I'm praying."  In other words, "don't interrupt." 

I don't know what God has planned for this child, but I do know she has brought great joy to the rest of us.  Always happy, she lightens many a moment.

Yet when Summer was only a few years old, she acquired a bone infection in her hip.  We thought she might be taken from us, and once again I was in dire need of my Deliverer.  God spared her life overwhelming me with His mercy.  

One thing I know, this child will always remind me of God's grace which smiled down on me one Aug. 19th.  God beamed vibrant sunlight against a dark place in my life to unveil a shade of grace in passionate hue.  In the shadow of the Rock, under the shelter of His wings, I can still see its color.
Today I face another monumental mountain.  It is inevitable, this transition, as our family sprouts wings and flies toward college.  I must surrender my children once again, remind myself of Who's they are, and believe that He who began a good work in them will complete it.
I have a Deliverer who is standing by, Jesus, the One who cares deeply not only for me, but for my children as well.  He is the LORD of Heaven's Armies.  

And when it comes time for Summer to fly I know My Deliverer will still be just as strong to hold, to keep, and to carry.

Her birthday will always remind me of God's face shining down on me. 

Happy 10th birthday Summer!  Go with God, for He will always go with you!
And we're off!   

1 comment:

  1. Jewel, this was so encouraging to read! Thank you for being so honest. I felt the same sense of dread with having our second kiddo, Madelyn. Although the birth was very difficult and a bit scary, he took care of us both and now we are doing great! He has blessed us with an easy baby who sleeps...such a blessing since my worst fear was the sleep deprivation that came with our first kiddo. We are so thankful for her and I understand what you mean when you say, "I was in awe of God's mercy. He heard my cry and most of all, I knew His personal touch in my life. The Deliverer stepped into my dilemma." Thanks again for the honesty and for an encouraging reminder of His grace!
    -Karen Loucks (Anema)