I've been slowly falling apart these past couple weeks, drawing away from my savior and closing off parts of my heart. The attitude of my heart was slowly working its way out in chores not done, friends not called, time not spent in the word.
This past weekend I took Quinn out to Foster Falls with a group from school for an overnight camping trip (which he loved) and a taste of outdoor rock climbing (which he did not love). It was the perfect weekend for a voyage into the woods. I had spent the previous week checking out our tent, trying to find all the gear stashed over the house, and planning for every possible four-year-old curve ball. Between working, preparing for the trip, and visits from family, I didn't have much time to think about the trip.
But I could feel the panic setting in on the drive down, and sure enough, as I strapped on Emmett's pack with his tent and sleeping bag inside, the full weight of how much I miss him came rushing over me all at once. As we hiked the short trail to the campground, we were often alone and the tears would fall hot and fast as Quinn jabbered on behind me unaware. I did marvel at his ability to maintain a constant stream of chatter while practically climbing to the campsite. He certainly did not inherit that skill from me.
This morning we decided to spend playing on the edge of the plunge pool at the base of the falls. The water was deep and frigid. I couldn't help thinking how Emmett would have enjoyed the freezing cold water and would have found a way to drag me in against my will. Since we didn't have Quinn's swimming vest, we played on the shore chasing villains, trying to skip stones, and finding rocks that looked like rock monster teeth.
Quinn enjoyed his weekend so much he went to bed about 6 pm tonight without a fuss. I however, spent most of the weekend just trying to hold myself together because Emmett's absence was so powerfully felt. There were times the my efforts at self-control cost so much that I could barely speak. Consequently I didn't have much time for reflection until we got home and my hands were busy with unpacking and laundry. And I couldn't seem to get these lyrics by David Crowder out of my head:
He is jealous for me, loves like a hurricane,
I am tree bending beneath the weight of his wind and mercy
all of a sudden I am unaware of these afflictions eclipsed by glory
and I realize just how beautiful you are and how great your affections are for me.
oh, how he loves us so, oh how he loves us, how he loves us so.It would seem that I have been dabbling on the edge of God's mercy, refusing to immerse myself in His love. Because it is in his glorious presence that my afflictions are truly eclipsed. Therein lies the beauty of affliction, for whatever form it takes, whatever state it finds me in, it will never fail to bring the love of God into sharp focus. And somehow, even in my circumstances, I am learning thankfulness. I find myself curious to plunge the depths of God's love, knowing that I will never be prepared for the shock of clarity and depth of grace I will find there.
(check out the whole song here)
So my prayer this week is to be able to immerse myself in the love of God as if I were jumping into that freezing cold plunge pool and feel my breath taken away as the full force of that love surrounds me.