Years ago, I was introduced to Amy Shreve's music by an old friend, and over the years, I have been grateful to remember the promise of Psalm 116 in the difficult seasons of life.
Each of us desires to be heard in the midst of the chaos of life, don't we? Especially in this frantic time of everyone having a voice on social media and when every other person you know is a "blogger," there is something deeply affirming to our souls for someone to look into our eyes and say, "I hear you. I know what you're saying."
I wrote last month about the rough patch we hit in the week post-Christmas. One thing after another went wrong, and honestly, it took a serious toll on our family. Satan takes full advantage of our weakness in those seasons to really up the ante for his devious plans; we ended up in a messy heap of anxiety, loneliness, and feeling like we were on a sad and deserted island with no hope for help or rescue.
Into the second week of January, I knew I needed a major boost of spiritual support, so I carefully wrote out an email to five of my most trusted friends (two dear college friends and three older women who have been mentors and truth-speakers in my life), asking them to join me in prayer for specific provision from the Lord for various issues and for protection over our family in this suddenly-challenging season.
I said last month that there is truth to the phrase, "When it rains, it pours."
Well, in the aftermath of that terrible, horrible, no good, very bad week, it has continued to pour, but the storm has changed from raining trials to a downpour of blessings.
The men from our life group came over last weekend and put a significant dent in the yard work we had wanted to get done before the baby arrived. We love having huge trees all over our property, but good heavens, the leaves! Not only were they able to rake and bag up most of the fallen leaves, but they also managed to clear most of the branches that had snapped off and fallen (or were precariously dangling) from the trees in the ice storm we had several weeks ago. They cleaned out our gutters, installed some shelving in our garage so we could have a better system of organization in there, and taped up the nursery so it is ready to be painted.
A couple of the men returned this weekend with a trailer to help N whisk away all those bags of leaves and branches. Our yard looks so much bigger now without the giant heap of branches taking up a third of it!
We have also been more than abundantly blessed with baby showers for this little girl! In the past month, we have been showered three times with time with friends and special gifts. I've loved having the time to spend with other women. I've loved hearing their advice and funny stories about adjusting to life with more than one child. I've loved how different each shower was, from a gathering in our living room to a color-coordinated, prayerful event at the home of one of my MOMS, to a cozy girls' night out at a local cafe with my life group sisters.
The Lord has supplied us with material needs, too, as He supplied affordable, new-to-us (much-needed) dressers for us and B, several hand-me-downs for both B and the baby, and keeping my hooky fingers quite busy over the past month with orders.
When I decided that it would be smarter to get my hair cut and donated before the baby arrived, I was pleasantly surprised to receive a discount (on top of a wonderful cut and overall salon experience) from another leader in my MOMS group who came highly recommended by nearly every woman I know here. She also offered to ask her dad if we could borrow his laser level so we wouldn't be spending forever measuring out the stripes I want on the nursery wall.
One of the girls at my MOMS table let us borrow her electric sander so we could get rid of the weird textured walls (at least in the nursery) that seem to have seen their hey-day in all the homes around here.
Two other beautiful women from the MOMS leadership team offered to come help me paint the nursery this week.
Our chiropractor has been a life saver as I've gone to her with various major aches through this pregnancy, particularly in these past couple weeks of lots of bending and lifting.
And it's even in the tiny things, like a poetry "chain letter" going around FB, giving me a chance to indulge in some of my favorite poets, something I haven't done in years! Or discovering this treasure in the sea of the blogging world to remind me of my
Psalm 116:7 continues:
So even though both N and I have been laid low this past week with some kind of on-going virus and there are still several Big Things on our minds and to-do lists, our hearts are at rest and so.very.thankful.
Because we know that we are heard.
And we know that we are loved.
And we know that we are loved.
I hope that, today, your day is filled with reminders of how much YOU are loved, too. Because we all need to be reminded once in a while, don't we?