Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Letting "Good Things" Go

"He maketh the barren woman to keep house,
and to be a joyful mother of children. Praise ye the LORD."
Psalm 113:9

"Are you finished yet, Mama?"
Zach called from the open door.

"No, not yet.
In a minute",
 I called...gently pleading for more time.

It was one of those decisions we, as mothers, are faced with all day long.
A crossroads, of sorts.

Time to make a choice...on how we will spend the next few minutes.
A time to choose...between what we feel we need to be doing,
and dropping it all to sit and spend time with the little ones who
will only be little for a little while.

My heart followed him all the way down the hall....
after I told him I would be done in a minute.
There is nothing I would rather do...
than be with him and his Daddy.

Sometimes even the good things need left undone....
so we can spend time with the ones we love most.

I realized it as I sat at the computer...
trying to "perfect" a blog...for the umpteenth time.
It just didn't flow.
The rhythm escaped.
It evaded me no matter how many times I hit backspace or delete.

I finally got at least half-way acceptable,
(is it ever really completely what I envision and desire it to be?)
hit "publish",
and went to find that sweet boy.

He had waited...ever so patiently....
for what I had promised would only be "a minute",
but had turned into the past half hour,
 for me to sit down with him and watch his new "One Nation Under God" DVD
from Mike Huckabee's "Learn Our History" series.
He had been looking forward to watching it for days,
and it had finally come in the mail.

I shouldn't have made him wait.
Blogs can wait.

There are mothers in Oklahoma who would give their right arm to hear
their sweet baby ask for their attention or to hear them call them "Mama"....just one more time.

My heart aches when I think of it.

We were shopping at the Flea Market,
enjoying the day with loved ones,
when Mom Smith and I decided we wanted to hit some thrift stores.

We did, and when it came time to meet up with the others,
we picked a particular meeting place where she and I waited.
It seemed to be taking a long time.
The phone rang.

"Honey, I can't find Zach."
Kevin is the calmest man I've ever known.
He brings a precious, coveted sense of peace to any crisis situation.
I could sense the slightest twinge of worry....almost a trace of unusual panic....
in his familiar, soft-spoken voice.

"What do you mean?"
Fear rose within me, as incomprehensible scenarios began
to present themselves to my mind.

"I told him to stay with Austin and Phyllis in a certain spot.
When I came back, Austin said he had gone inside.
I've looked everywhere inside, and he is just not there."

Okay, now I was sick.
My stomach ached deep inside,
as I told Mom what was going on.

"We're coming right now."
I told Kevin I loved him, as I hit the "end" button on my phone.

How we made it there, I cannot say, other than the grace of God.
Mom was driving, and she was terrified.
Not nearly as much as I was, though.
It just wasn't possible for a human heart to hold any more terror...
than mine did in those moments.

We reached the fairgrounds.
I thought of the hundreds of booths,
tables, vendors....strangers.....
my mind exploring all sorts of possibilities....
none of them pleasant.

"Mom, just let me out here, will you?
I'll get out and be looking while you go park the car."

I got out, rushed to the building,
and found my strong, steady, soothing husband's waiting arms.
He draws me close...and I feel safe...
no matter what storm is raging.

I knew the minute his eyes met mine that Zachary was still no where to be found.
I spotted Austin.

"I've been outside having prayer."
Bless his sweet heart.

Has there ever been any sweeter boys...
than Zach and his two best friends in the world?

I suppose every Mama feels this way.

"Austin, you're such a good boy" I told him,
as I often do.

He walked with me, and Kevin went an opposite way...
searching every aisle,
every booth,
every face.

We met up at the opposite end of the building....
without Zach.

There were some ladies running a baked goods booth.
Have you ever been in a panic mode and stood still trying your utmost
to find something....someone...anyone....who could...somehow make a positive difference?
The Spirit of God witnessed that the ladies in front of me were Christians.
At the risk of me having misunderstood His Voice
and them turning out to not being praying people,
and at the risk of sounding and appearing completely insane,
I started talking.
I didn't care.
I let go of caring what people think of me a while back.
It just isn't important anymore.
It just doesn't matter....not a drop.
Especially, then.
Nothing else mattered....except seeing his sweet, rosy face,
and knowing all was well....and back together....and right in our world again.

Her kind eyes looked up from where she sat behind the table.
She was wrapping a loaf of homemade bread.

"Would you all please go to prayer?
We can't find our little boy.
Please pray we can find him
and that he's okay."

Without stopping to further explain or even listen for her response,
I kept walking.
Searching every nook and spot.
Pleading with God.
Trusting Him to do what I could not...during the separation.

I don't remember how long this went on....
or how long Kevin had already been looking before he called me.
All I do know is that it felt like eternity.
I reached the other end of the building....again....
looked outside,
and there.....
I saw the most precious sight I have ever....ever seen.
There he was.
Strolling along....carefree...
carrying the bag of books he had just bought.
Swinging his arms.
Happy....and thanks to our dear and wonderful Lord, as perfectly he could be.

Angels kept him.
I just know it.

There were people coming and going from and in all directions.
Angels guarded that precious boy.

I ran to him.
There were no words.
No scolding.
No sound at all....
except the continual flow and dropping of heart-wrenched tears.
They fell from my eyes...and splashed on to his little shoulder.

I cried from what felt like was the core of my soul.
Happy, relieved, thankful-from-the-bottom-of-my-heart, beyond-grateful tears.
He just stood there....not understanding.

"Mama???" he finally said.

I didn't answer.
I just couldn't.
I just held on.

Finally, letting go....
I saw one of the ladies from the baked goods table running towards us.

"Is he okay?"


"Oh, praise God!"

Thank you for your prayers."

I gave her a hug.

"Thank you for letting your light shine", I told her,
as she walked away.

It is wonderful to find brothers and sisters in Christ
every time you need them.
You can recognize them if you stay continually tuned to the Spirit's voice.
He will faithfully lead you to one another....
when you need each other most.
The sweetness in the smile usually adds any needed confirmation. :~)

We got our things together,
got in the car,
and drove towards home.

Zach was very quiet.
I think my outburst was about more than he could bear.

"I almost broke down and cried right there in that building."
Austin's voice was still shaky coming from the back seat.
"All I could think of was that I might never see you again.
I was praying that we'd find you."

Finally Zach spoke.

"I had walked around three times and was getting ready to go around again,
when something just told me to go back to the inside building.
So I did."

"Zach, that had to be because of Austin's prayers.
Every time you feel an impulse like that,
don't ever ignore it.
It is God telling you what to do and giving you direction."

I was still trembling.
I don't remember when I stopped.

It turned out to be a big misunderstanding.
Zach had told Austin and Phyllis he was going to look for his Daddy.
Austin thought he said he was going inside.

At any rate, Zach should not have wandered off.
We have told him that many times over.
Kevin had told him not to leave the table,
that he would be back in 30 minutes,
and for the two of them to stay together....always.

Zach had misunderstood, and all that was on his mind, was to find his Daddy.

Bless the Lord, all is well that ends well.

"Bless the LORD, O my soul: and all that is within me, bless his holy name."
Psalm 103:1

Matt Redman - 10,000 Reasons

Don't we all have 10,000 reasons?
To bless the Lord?
To worship His holy name?
To give Him praise?

God answered prayer.
Through it, He reminded me that He is always on guard.

"For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways."
Psalm 91:11

He knows where each one of us all times.
His eyes never leave us.
He protects and shields even when we don't know we need to be protected.
He was continually with Zach.

The experience has made me ever more aware of how
every moment we are given together is beyond precious.
And how I should let some things go....even the good things.
The things I think need to be done can wait.
I've known that and practiced it Zach's whole life,
but sometimes we all need to be reminded.

There are things that we should pare make room for what matters most.
They grow up so fast.
Way too fast.
We blink, and they are as tall as we are.
Where does the time go?

I remember holding him...for hours....literally....
when he was a baby.
Just because I didn't want to put him down.
All the way through his two-hour naps.
Not wanting to let go...even for a matter what else needed to be done.
I often heard comments like...
"you need to put him down" and
"you're going to spoil that baby" and
"he'll be a Mama's boy".

Oh, well. :~)

Their well-meaning comments bounced right off....
went in one ear, and right out the other.

I guess when you wait so long to have a child,
when your hopes and dreams are consistently shattered by doctors,
when you are a woman barren....
then all at once, out of the blue, God opens your womb
and sends you the sweetest, most precious gift....
well maybe you are just a tad more thankful and beholden to God...
for the invaluable miracle He placed in your womb...and your arms. :~)
And maybe you are just a bit more conscious of the magnitude of the treasure....
of a single moment....
of the moments that make up this amazing journey called raising a child.

I don't regret a minute.
My arms feel empty now.
I miss those days.
I yearn for yesterday....
until I stop and think.
He is still little...somewhat.
He is still at home...with us.
He still needs his Mama and Daddy.
He still craves our time....more than anything else we could ever give him.

So, cobwebs can wait.
Writing can be done...when he is asleep or otherwise occupied.
Writing is a dream.
Singing is a dream.
Having a perfectly-organized home is a dream.
But, such small dreams...when compared to my two biggest ones.
Being Kevin's wife and Zach's mama are the two biggest dreams of my life.
This is what I was meant to do...and be.
It is God's plan.
I am beyond content right in the middle of it.
Other things can wait....and be squeezed in, if possible.
If not, it is really no big deal....nothing important is lost.

"Thank you, Lord, for gentle reminders of what my priorities are."

I pray every day for more time with the ones I love the most.

Sometimes, you just have to let go of everything else to have that.
Even the "good" things.


  1. Cheeryl, I loved reading this post, and I am so glad Zach is alright. It was like reading a story, but it is true, and you know what is important. We mamas have to learn that, because we are oh so very human. And I heard what you said about keeping house. I'm glad they don't have to be perfect. Love and Prayers, Debby

    1. Thank you so much, Debby. I'm so thankful Zach is okay, too...I am still praising God for His love and mercy and protection. He is SO faithful! And yes, praise His name, that things don't have to be perfect. He loves us just the same, and so many things are more important. Thank you so much for stopping by. You are such a blessing and encouragement to me! Love, Cheryl

  2. wonderful perspective. so glad you shared.

    1. Hi, Courtney! I am SO happy you stopped by and left such kind words behind! May God bless you in a special way. Love, Cheryl