Some moments are easy and some are hard. Some days are "good" and some are "bad." It's hard to know, impossible to know, what will happen to send me down that road.
Two days ago the FedEx truck pulled up at our house at 8 p.m. "Sorry I'm so late...." he said. "Oh, don't worry about it!" I said. I always say. And I took the box and took it inside and wondered what it could be because I wasn't expecting anything. Scissors, box opened, packing peanuts. Something fragile. A packing slip.
And before I even saw it, the tears welled up. It's been so long since I've mentioned that painting, how much I love it. How much Mary in her everyday-ness speaks to me. The small, simple things she did for Jesus for so many years, things we probably don't think about often, but the same things we are doing every day for our own children. And Jesus, he was a baby. Not just an infant and then twelve and then thirty. But a little boy who did little boy things. With a mother who cared for Him.
My heart was filled simultaneously with so much gratitude and so much longing. And then...well then I saw the order date on the packing slip. This print, so especially precious and meaningful to me now, was ordered when Nicholas was still here on Earth with us. She hadn't ordered it after the fact. The Holy Spirit had moved her to send this to me, she not even knowing why, not knowing what it would mean once it finally arrived.
Then, oh then came the wracking sobs, those ugly, coughing tears. The curling up on the bed. The husband trying to come to my rescue. It's hard to know that all of this was already planned out for me. I could have said no, but I said yes, and even though it's hard, hard, hard....so hard...all this love, these blessings, these not-coincidences, these opportunities to see His hand moving through all of our lives, lives of people who have never met "for real," all of it would be lost. How do you feel wretchedly sad and terribly unworthy and unbelievably blessed and absolutely tiny all at the same moment? I don't know. I was there, I will probably be there again, yet I still don't know how a person can be all those things at the very same time.
I still don't know. Maybe I'll never know. Maybe that's another blessing. We don't have to know how we survive and navigate and eventually thrive again. Someone has to do it for us. He does it for us. If we let Him, He does it all for us.