Last Saturday night I had a hot date with my husband. I got all dressed up and we headed to the hospital. There, I checked in for my 3rd MRI of my brain in the last 20 months. I’ve been told that I have a beautiful brain, but they keep wanting to see more and more of it. So I stripped off my sexy outfit and donned some one-size-fits-all scrubs instead. And while my husband waited in the waiting room, I spent my date night in the MRI tube.
On Monday morning I found myself in the neurosurgeon’s office waiting for the results of my MRI. I was very nervous, so I had dolled up in a hot pink outfit with matching lip gloss. I was so flashy that the receptionist commented on my outfit. I told her that my hot pink was working hard to cheer up and bolster a trembling heart. My hot pink, praying friends, and Jesus were holding me together.
As I patiently waited in the stark examination room, I wondered, “What else did the MRI find? And what will it mean to my future?” I wondered if I would be scheduling brain surgery before I left the office. I questioned if anything, short of a miracle, could be done to treat the chronic pain in my face. I wondered if I would leave the office in tears and despair or in hope. I had no idea what was to come, only that Jesus was holding me together in that lonely waiting room.
I’m sure that you have faced similar scary moments too.
When you waited for results from the 2nd mammogram.
When you got the phone call because your husband was in a wreck.
When your Pap smear showed abnormal cells.
When your daughter showed symptoms of meningitis.
When your infant was diagnosed with cerebral palsy.
When your father was taken back for open heart surgery.
When the scan showed a mass.
When your friend overdosed and was rushed to the hospital.
No matter how strong your faith or how mature you are, there are times when life is scary. We are walking blindfolded on the road of life, with only our Maker knowing our final destination. It is during these times of crisis and terror and despair that Jesus carries us, which is so beautifully depicted in the Footprints in the Sand poem by Mary Stevenson:
One night I dreamed a dream.
As I was walking along the beach with my Lord.
Across the dark sky flashed scenes from my life.
For each scene, I noticed two sets of footprints in the sand,
One belonging to me and one to my Lord.
After the last scene of my life flashed before me,
I looked back at the footprints in the sand.
I noticed that at many times along the path of my life,
especially at the very lowest and saddest times,
there was only one set of footprints.
This really troubled me, so I asked the Lord about it.
“Lord, you said once I decided to follow you,
You’d walk with me all the way.
But I noticed that during the saddest and most troublesome times of my life, there was only one set of footprints.
I don’t understand why, when I needed You the most,
You would leave me.”
He whispered, “My precious child, I love you and will never leave you
Never, ever, during your trials and testings.
When you saw only one set of footprints,
It was then that I carried you.”
Jesus carries us. Like the lost lamb that the good shepherd rescues, He picks us up, throws us over His strong shoulders, and carries us through the danger. He carries our fragile emotions through the storm. He carries us through grief and sorrow. He shoulders our weary bodies through the fire. And when we are safely to the other side, He sets us down gently on the ground again.
He carries us through divorce, through depression, through abuse, through bankruptcy, through chronic pain, through betrayal, through rejection, and through disappointment. He carries us through this scary thing called life.
We don’t know what our future holds, but we know Him who holds our futures.
And we can rest in His embrace. Let Jesus carry you, girlfriend. He is carrying me, too.
PS I did in fact leave the office in tears, but I do not need brain surgery. Praise the Lord.
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