Meanwhile, the moment we get tired in the waiting, God’s Spirit is right alongside helping us along. If we don’t know how or what to pray, it doesn’t matter. He does our praying in and for us, making prayer out of our wordless sighs, our aching groans. He knows us far better than we know ourselves, knows our pregnant condition, and keeps us present before God.
(from THE MESSAGE: The Bible in Contemporary Language © 2002 by Eugene H. Peterson. All rights reserved.)
This morning our pastor continued his series on Romans. We’re in chapter 8 – you can listen here, if you’d like. I don’t know if you’ve read Romans much in your lifetime- but it’s deep! It’s got stuff in it that you need to think on. Seriously. Today’s verses (above – and no, Carl doesn’t move very quckly! J) have been a comfort to my heart for many years.
Do you ever have periods of time – or events – in your life – where the emotion is just too… profound?… for words? Those are the times that I think of in relation to these verses.
Saying goodbye to my Dad – a month after marrying John – knowing that this would be the last time I’d ever see him – as we embarked on the trip to my new home in Kentucky.
Holding my first born – born prematurely at 23 weeks gestation, as she breathed for her 4 minutes of earthly life before she was ushered into Glory – and her first deep breath of REAL air – in the presence of the Savior!
Holding my Grammy, caring for her – everything – after she’d had a series of strokes – she’d chosen to die at home, and she’d asked me to take care of her until she did. Knowing that even though she was blind, paralyzed, and struggling for every breath – that she oozed with the presence of the Holy One. When I’d lay next to her and hold her hand and whisper hymns, or read her Bible to her – there would be the smallest hint of a smile – and my heart would SING – because I knew she would soon be at the feet of Jesus – and so did she!
Understanding for the first time – as fully as I was able to at that point – that my loved one was accused of horrific evil. Realizing that our lives would never be the same because of it. Feeling so – I don’t know if that emotion has a name – deeply – Horror? Overwhelming sadness? – that the strength to draw the next breath LITERALLY escaped me.
Being knee deep in my Mom’s dementia – only not knowing what it was yet – and feeling angry, confused, sorrowful, fearful – trying to figure out what it was that I was supposed to do, how we would get through it, how I could keep her safe, how I could stay sane.
Feeling indescribable joy the morning of my birthday – walking into my Mom’s room at the assisted living memory care facility – and she knew me! She knew it was my birthday! She told me she loved me! She gave me a quick hug – before she went away again. Or the three or four other snippets of moments when she came out of the fog of her dementia – was fully herself again for mere SECONDS – and I was privileged enough to BE THERE!
Being in so much physical pain that it was literally impossible to utter noise, move, anything.
There have been moments of great emotion – so deep that I – to this day – have no way to adequately voice. There are times when the only prayer I can utter is, “Father… please!” Or “Jesus! Help me!” I’ve prayed these prayers so many times I don’t think it’s possible to recount how many times.
NEVER have I found myself alone.
ALWAYS He has been there.
This is when these verses have been so near – so very real – and I really can’t explain it well other than to say I’d be undone without this amazing, loving, unsearchable gift of God!