"He shall feed his flock like a shepherd: he shall gather the lambs with his arm,
and carry them close to his heart, and shall gently lead those that are with young." Isaiah 40:11

Sunday, September 19, 2010


We all made it to church this morning!  Amazing! I think it has been 5 weeks since we have all made it there. (holidays, colds etc..) After church, we ink stamped all our kids feet and added their footprints to the others on a nursery wall.  We had always meant to do this with the older two but time kind of flew away on us.  I like that all of their prints are close to each other.  And one day....when Rachel is gone and my heart aches with missing her, I will look at that wall and remember this day. Her footprints will remind us that she really was here - that she made her imprint on the world and on our hearts.   

Yesterday I made a quick trip to the grocery store.  I admit, I am definetly a CBC girl -  our dial rarely moves from it, but this time I decided to chance the Christian radio channel.  I heard the announcer talking about some musician who just had their third child.  It sounded so happy and I had this little stab of jealousy. I wished so desperately in that one moment that Rachel was healthy and it was a cruel reminder of what we had wanted life to hold for us.  I moved to turn it off but then I heard the words "unfortunately he was diagnosed with a heart malformation called Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome. Right now he is in surgery fighting for his life." (one the the things Rachel has is hypoplastic right heart)

Suddenly I wasn't jealous.  Instead I was weeping.  Just a few extra words made the difference.  And I thought a bit about jealousy. How so often I think I know how to paint the picture of a person's life  - and yet I really have no idea what forms of suffering others are secretly going through or will go through.  Some people do seem to get hit by unbelievable suffering again and again - life is so unfair.  Still, none of us are exempt.  God, help me to have your perspective.  Help me today, to choose thankfulness instead of bitterness.  I want my life to be ruled by Love, not fear. This is so hard sometimes.  You know how weak I am.             

Shortly after that announcement, this song by Rich Mullins came on.  I love the words.  I think Rich Mullins was killed in a car accident not that long ago, right?  When I was in high school, a teacher gave us all a cassette tape of Rich Mullins.  At the time this music wasn't exacly the 'coolest' but I secretly listened to his music over and over again and it got me through some tough times.  Sometimes we have no idea what a difference our 'little' gifts can make.  

Thank-you God - You and your plans for us are bigger than anything we are facing right now or will ever face.  Your love is deeper, more true and loyal than we can imagine.   

Rich Mullins "If I Stand"
There's more that rises in the morning than the sun
And more that shines in the night than just the moon
It's more than just this fire here that keeps me warm
In a shelter that is larger than this room
And there's a loyalty that's deeper than mere sentiments
And a music higher than the songs that I can sing
The stuff of Earth competes for the allegiance
I owe only to the giver of all good things

So if I stand let me stand on the promise
That you will pull me through
And if I can't, let me fall on the grace
That first brought me to You
And if I sing let me sing for the joy
That has born in me these songs
And if I weep let it be as a man
Who is longing for his home

There's more that dances on the prairies than the wind
More that pulses in the ocean than the tide
There's a love that is fiercer than the love between friends
More gentle than a mother's when her baby's at her side


Sharon said...

Oh Kendra, you take me on a journey of emotions every time you share a post. I feel you in my heart... and the more I think I've learned about the ways the physical heart and spiritual heart are linked the more I realize there is so much more to discover.

(~Hmmmm... does that make sense? I always wonder if people think I'm talking in some kind of hokey nonsense.)

I'll try to elaborate.

When I think about you, read what you've written, talk to you or talk about you I feel love/admiration/sadness/etc,... I feel these emotions in my heart. Real physical sensation in my chest that is resonant with the emotion that is linked to my relationship connection to you.

Ok, so if there are no coincidences (my belief) then that sensation is really linked to my actual heart organ. It must be linked because that is where I FEEL it.

So... when I think about Rachel's amazing and fascinating heart which is being studied by brilliant cardiac-specialized physicians several things come to mind for me:
-I am thankful that my heart (vessels, arteries, lungs, kidneys, brain, et al) are well-formed and have served me wonderfully through 33yrs thus far.
-I wonder what Rachel's spiritual experience feels like for her.
-I wonder... if her unparalleled physical structure is the reason she smiles in a way that is so unique. It is obvious that this affectionate exchange with her has offered your family and other people who have interacted with her a chance to bond in a way that is exceptional.

(btw... to relate to your emotions of jealousy, passion, joy and sorrow - I feel those in my chest too. Worry, distrust, nervousness/anxiety, fear and anger I feel in my gut. Envy and disgust are in 'the pit of my stomach' and make it 'lurch'.)

Love you always my dear friend,


Brenda Funk said...

Your post brought tears to my eyes...again! Thanks for sharing and writing so very well. Miss you all so much already!