Friday, October 28, 2011

Baptism by Bathtub

I cracked. I fell. I was empty, at bottom. I was in the bathtub, almost fully submerged, water over my ears so I could hear nothing. I asked the nothing to become God's voice and asked Him to speak to me. I laid there. I did not hear anything, exactly, but a peace came upon me. I got out of the bathtub, dried off, went into the bedroom and wrote in my prayer journal. The words that came out I know came from God. I want you to read what I heard and wrote down. Fill in the details with your own details, the things that you struggle with, the things that you most succeed at. And at the end of His "love letter," I hope you'll feel as loved as I did, as new as I felt - a new creation, emerging from the waters of the bathtub.

My child,
I love you when you cry 
over your beloved mother. 
I love you when you grieve 
over having to give up your beloved pet.
I love you when you feel like running,
hurting yourself. 
I love you when you don't think
you are a good mother, 
and think you can't love them
like you ought to.

I love you when you are passive-agressive,
selfish, impatient,
and mean.
I love you when you doubt.
I love you when you hate your life. 
I love you when you feel lost,
like you have
no one left

it is in your lostness,
your sinfulness, your
very bottom,
where you finally
look up
and see Me,
that I have always 
loved you, always been there 
by your side, 
though everything.

I love you at your worst
and I love you at your best,
when you hold your stepson in the morning
and rock and rock and rock,
when you cradle your husband's head
and guide him to Me, 
when you watch a client at work 
with awe and delight.
I love you when you seek
Me out in everything you do.

I love that you puddled into the bathtub tonight
and lay with ears and body submerged
and asked Me to speak to you.
I love that as you listened to the sound
of water going down the drain,
you imagined your burdens draining as well.
I love that you felt peaceful.
I gave you that peace.
Because you deserve it. 
Not because you are perfect
and will never fall again,

but because you are human
and, in falling, you continue
to look for Me.

I love you always,
in all ways,
to depths you cannot imagine.

How do you feel after reading that? I feel strongly that God didn't mean that for me, alone. He meant it for my husband, my stepchildren; He meant it for you. 

We are human. We will fall. But in the falling, we must cry out, look up to God. 

I lift up my eyes to the hills—
where does my help come from?
My help comes from the Lord,
the Maker of heaven and earth.

~Psalm 121
A song of ascents.

Look at that: a song of ascents. Ascend upward...look upward...

and just maybe you'll want to take a bath sometime soon...

and listen.  

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