A Prayer For Grace…

I wanted to thank everyone for the way you’ve surrounded us with your love, prayers, and support.

Jacques Update

I wanted to update you and let you know that Jacques is doing much better. His blood pressure has stabilized for the most part. But it does jump up when he tries to sit. He can “feel” his left side – but he can’t move it. He has absolutely no strength. We have a missionary in St. Louis – Autumn who is an OT – working with him. He’s having to learn how to sit, how to roll over in bed, etc. I know Jacques and my dad are a lot alike. They find their worth in what their hands can do. My biggest prayer request right now is that Jacques doesn’t lose hope and doesn’t lose who he is in Christ because of his physical setback.

Levi Update

This past Thursday Levi’s cast had become loose so we took him to St. Louis to have it re-casted. We also got another set of x-rays.  It seemed as though his bones were growing at a 40 degree angle which isn’t good. We thought we were going to have to fly to the states for another urgent surgery  – – one that would require us to break his bone to reset and then another 6 weeks with a new cast.  My poor child. Goodness gracious.

I can tell you that my nerves were absolutely shot. I called my mom on the phone weeping –  asking her to fly out with Levi and me. I didn’t want Jose to come and the kids be left alone.

We had arranged for another MAF plane & were looking at tickets. In those hours of shock – I cried out to God. I just couldn’t understand the drama – why so much drama? I felt so helpless.

So I’m just about to purchase our tickets on AA – and literally while I’m finalizing the purchase….and in the midst of my tears & anguish…. I get a vox with a 2nd/3rd opinion. The doctors said he was okay. On second look it wasn’t as bad as they thought. There’s no need to fly out. And then I weeped again.

**

I know for most of us – when we cry out to God –  it can feel like He’s taking too long to respond.  Sometimes it’s weeks – months – years… before we understand… before we feel like He’s really heard us and answered us.

Sometimes I feel like we just live crisis to crisis. And many times I cry out – goodness gracious. 

The past few days I’ve been thinking about those words I say in frustration – goodness gracious.

You know how you say something over and over again  – and all of a sudden you’re not even sure what you’re actually saying?

So I started researching online to see what it means….these words I cry out.

Goodness Gracious is an interjection expressing surprise

Good graciousgracious sakes. Exclamation of surprise, dismay, or alarm.. Both goodness and gracious originally alluded to the good (or grace) of God,  which date from the 1700’s.

**

The more I reflected, the more I realized that as I called out these words in surprise & tears – what shouldn’t be surprising and what I always seemed to forget about….  was the never-changing, steady, dependable, everlasting goodness and graciousness of God. A God who wipes away my tears every single time and holds me close.

When I got the vox that Levi was okay – I of course immediately thanked God for being so good. Right? It’s so easy to thank God when things are good. But yet in my state of alarm – I never think about the grace & goodness of God. How easy it is to forget and take for granted.

Then I wondered what about when others are in a state of alarm? When they cry out goodness gracious? You know that happens everywhere and every day.   Every day is a crisis for someone.

Do I offer them grace in the same way I crave it? Do I show them God’s goodness? When I have the ability to extend grace to someone who may not deserve it – do I give it? When it’s in my capacity – when the decision is in my hands – do I respond with the same grace & goodness God pours out on me? Do I answer back as quick as I can – or do I make them wait for days & weeks for answers I know today?

Just something I’m reflecting on as I look back these past few weeks…. as I clearly see God’s fingerprints in the smudges of my life…

***

Lyrics:

If I could make just one request that would mark all the days I have left,
I’d rather not be known for treasures and fame or trophies and accolades I know will fade.

Instead I would rather be known by the kindness and love that I show,
To be known for patience and long suffering; a giver of life by the words that I speak.

So with every breath You give to breathe, I pray it’s your glory that they see.
And of all the words this world could say, may they say I am full of grace.

I’ll be the first to confess I’m not always found at my best.
But Lord be my strength in those moments I’m weak and
I’ll keep on giving the grace I’ve received.

So with every breath You give to breathe, I pray it’s your glory that they see.
And of all the words this world could say, may they say I am full of grace.

And finally when I see your face and I’ve reached the end of my race,
I don’t want to be known for finishing strong.
But as someone that Your grace carried all along.

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