I have been having a hard time of late. And, maybe, somewhere, there is some hardened soul that would say, "Enough already! Get over it."
It's a good thing I don't dwell on what others may think about me.
I have lived my life as the goofy, clumsy, ditsy, yet very loved youngest child of the Jim Merritt Family.
There may have been days in my life that I doubted I could succeed, that I doubted my worth, that I doubted my intelligence.
But I have NEVER doubted I was loved.
My sister and I were talking recently and she said, "What do you do when the two people who will always love you unconditionally are GONE?"
I don't have the answer. Yet I am struggling to find it.
Every day, I struggle.
And if my struggle is too much for you to bear, kindly move on to the next blog.
I was on my way home from work today, missing them. Not unusual, but today I feel overwhelmed.
I had my iPod out and I put on the song that Sister Weeks sang at my Mother's funeral, "If You Could See Me Now."
I can't tell you the number of times I have heard that I should not be sad for them because they are so much better off.
And I do know this with every fiber of my being. I would never want them to come back to the suffering that they endured.
I am not sad for what they have gained; I am sad for what I have lost.
Inside of me still is that little girl who waited every afternoon for my Daddy to come home from work, and who fell asleep each night beside my Mama until Daddy came and took me to my bed. Still there is the little girl that sat between them in the front of the car when my giggling couldn't be stopped any other way and the one who never liked to stay the night away from them.
I would hardly every make plans for Friday night as a teenager because I knew they were going out to eat and if I was home, I would get to go too. Those meals were some of the best times of my life, and not many teenagers can say that.
Over the years they became more than my parents, they became my friends. They were the first ones I wanted to call when something happened, good or bad, and they were my confidants, my advisers, my cheerleaders and my reality checks.
And as I listened to the words of that song today, I tried to picture them as they must be now, happy, whole and free, worshiping at the feet of Jesus.
I thought, what if I could see them now?
I remembered Moses when he came down from Mount Sinai after being the the presence of the Almighty God.
Exodus 34:29-30 And it came to pass, when Moses came down from mount Sinai with the tow tables, of testimony in Moses' hand, when he came down from the mount, that Moses wist not that the skin of his face shone while he talked with him. And when Aaron and all the children of Israel saw Moses, behold the skin of his face shone; and they were afraid to come nigh him.
Moses asked the Lord in Exodus 33:18 I beseech thee, show me thy glory.
And the Lord replied "there shall no man see me, and live."
In my mind's eye I can see them now as they must be, with their faces alight with the glow of His presence.
I can feel the joy they must feel knowing they are changed forever. One moment they were here, broken and in pain, and the next moment they opened their eyes to His Glory. I can't even begin to know how that must feel for them, after suffering for so long.
And unlike me, there is no tears for them for He has dried them all.
Unlike those frequent trips to the hospital to be "fixed up" for a short time, they are forever changed, forever whole.
And I will continue to encourage myself with these thoughts for as long as I need to, even until I can see them again.
On that day when I, too, am forever changed.
Even so, come Lord Jesus......