The turning point for me was Sunday. Jake decided to change up the service a bit for Trevor. I was eager to be a part of that, and was so thankful that God brought Judah and I home so we could be there. But the emotions started before we even got to church! I had a moment - just a moment - where I was...I don't even know what to call it. I was ashamed to even say it out loud. I'm not sure why I did. But I told Jared how awesome it is that the A's have so much support right now; that everyone is coming together to hold them up and walk through this with them. But it's temporary. This won't last forever. Our challenges and ups-n-downs with Judah will. I feel awful even writing that down. But that's where I was for that moment in time. And Jared let me feel that...grief, frustration, whatever it was for that moment, and then we moved on. [Part of my motivation for writing things like this down is thinking about the off chance that sometime someone will read that, and they'll need to know they're not alone when they think that, or they need to have permission to feel that way, or to at least be honest about how they're feeling. So, that's that. Moving on...] The morning at church was amazing. Best service I have been to since...I don't know when. Well, it's at least up there with Eli's baptism service:) It was an emotional and moving service that was in honor of Trevor; but it was so God-honoring and Christ-centered that Trevor became a beautiful vessel of God's grace and glory, rather than the point of the service. The truth statement was "My life is not about me". The crux of the message was: Surrender. I have understood for a long time that we are made to bring glory to God. Our purpose in life is to glorify Him and build His Kingdom. Over the last 2 1/2 years I have struggled to grasp the truth that this life and what happens in it is not really about me, or us, but about and for and because of Him. But that's really kind of an end. His glory is a goal. It's something we strive for and desire - living a life that brings Him glory. It's something we want others to see - His glory. But the beginning is surrender. Surrender. Laying down. Giving up. Face-planting before God. Now I see. I really see this. When I think back to the last 2 1/2 years of writing, I see an undercurrent that I never before noticed. And I understand now what God was speaking to my heart in the hospital. It's the message of surrender. God has been walking with me, holding my hand; but with every step I believe He's been teaching me how to surrender. He's been pursuing my heart. It's like every other lesson He's taught me is a just a sub-point under the heading "Surrender". I see now that even my most recent encounter with Him revolves around this. Choosing to rejoice, to pray, to thank - each one requires surrender. I have to lay self down to focus solely on Him. I have to give up what I want or think is best to truly thank Him and rejoice. I will be looking at things much differently from now on. I'm so, so thankful for His work in my heart! But not gonna lie. I'm a little apprehensive about what a lifestyle of consciously choosing to surrender requires. And, frankly, it sounds exhausting.
The last few days have also been difficult because of the weight I feel for Trevor and his parents. The things they're texting, or writing on CaringBridge (www.caringbridge.org/visit/trevorandersen.); what they're experiencing right now resonates deeply with me. I no longer have the luxury of merely feeling sympathy; full blown empathy has taken residence in my heart. I'm extremely thankful that God has given me a heart of compassion borne from our own experiences with Judah; but it's heavy. My heart is very heavy.
I guess that's it. I'm just in this weird place right now; right in the middle of this process, this work that God is doing. What a fabulous and awkward place to be. I feel like I'm just on the brink of seeing greatness in many ways. Not just in my own heart, but in the lives of Trevor and his family, in our Campus Life kids, in our Millard West community...and the hearts of my own kiddos. Speaking of which...
It has been so fun for me to see Lydia notice God more and more since she got her Jesus heart:) She is talking to her babies about Jesus A LOT! The other morning as we were cuddling in bed, she randomly said, "But there's no queen in Heaven." So, we had a little talk about how we get to be princes and princesses because we're children of the King. "And even Daddy is a children." My favorite is her new awareness of whose she is. She still loves her "Princess Lydia" stories that revolve around Princess Lydia, King Daddy, & Queen Mommy. She used to tell Daddy that he was her best King Daddy. Now she says, "Well...Jesus is my King Daddy..." Melts my heart.