Sunday, March 13, 2016

Holy Week

I have been pondering on the upcoming week of Easter.  With the trials we have been blessed to experience this year, I have come to know my Savior more than ever.  I have reflected daily, on his life and his mission.  Each day, regardless of my mood, I strive to picture him close to us.

It seems fitting that next week we commemorate his death, and over the next two weeks, we embark on the peak of this particular trial with Shelbie.  For weeks now, we have been anticipating surgery to move us closer to what we hope and pray will provide answers to her failing health.

Next Sunday is Palm Sunday. The day Jesus Christ entered the walls of Jerusalem.  He knew what the week would hold.  He knew of his divine mission.  He knew that the very people who would betray him, would be the ones he would carry their burden of sin for, as much as he would carry mine.  In the days leading up to Gethsemane, he would deliver some of his most moving and poignant lessons, even mighty miracles.  Simultaneously, in his preparation to make an atonement, he would suffer with lesser things; even small sifting holes that very well could have distracted even the Lamb of God.  He knew his mission, he pressed forward through the irritation of naysayers, false accusations; never swaying from his purpose and mission.

The entire week, he was surrounded by throngs of people.  People both for him and against him.  His mother was never far from his side.  I think of those who stood by the Savior, quietly administering to his needs.  I think of their suffering too as they watched the events of this week unfold.  I often wonder where Mary was, what Mary was doing when Jesus entered the gate of Gethsemane.

Gethsemane.  The place we will arrive at, some time on this mortal journey.  There is no way around the garden.  Christ entered those gates alone.  Gethsemane is a singular, solitary experience.  A moment when we must stand alone with only our devotion to God as our companion.

I don't assume that I know or even come close to understanding the depth and eternal significance of the final week of Christ's life.  I don't imagine that my discomforts of life, even my worst tribulation, hold a candle to what Christ suffered.  I know that it can't.  Yet, I feel a closeness to my Savior this week.  I feel I understand him better because of the Holy week He has placed ahead of us.

I will firmly place my hand in His and with my children in tow, we will walk a similar path this week, our own Holy week.   We will follow him as we have been commanded to do.

Make no mistake about it, I am very scared to embark on this week.  My insides have been shaking and quivering since Friday.  I am easily overcome with emotion both of fear and of faith.  It's a difficult thing to feel the power of both spirits working within me.

Without a doubt, as I strive to see this week with my spiritual eyes wide open, I will witness great miracles.  I will see angels and feel them.  I will count the blessings of the day and probably lose count of the blessings of the day. There will be profound lessons.  I'm sure, as is always the case, there will be exclamations of lesser things to irritate me.  At times, I know I will feel the stirrings of the Adversary, breaking down my resolve.

Tuesday will be significant for me.  Symbolically, I will be walking my dear Shelbie to the gates of  her own garden. I have stood by her side for 23 years.  I have taught her the best I could to know her Savior.  I have watched her sorrows and joys.  I will kiss her on the forehead and watch her walk away from me as she grapples with this very heavy, yet significant suffering with just the faith she has gathered along the way,  her devotion to her Father in Heaven and the mercy and love of her Savior and brother Jesus Christ.

I know that she can do this.  I know that she will come to her own terms of why she must suffer in this way.  I know that in this trial, she will find her purpose.

I don't know that I can do this.

I don't know what I am suppose to do while I wait for her.  The fear of losing my children has been a dread I have stowed away since the day they were born. Not only that, I dread that this surgery will still leave us without answers.  I dread that it will be a cancer that can not be treated.  I dread that it will not be cancer but something worse. I dread that she will die sooner than later.  I dread that she won't.  It's being caught in the paradox of what ifs and maybes that will surely erode my faith if I'm not careful.

At the same time I dread, I am deliberate in my faith and testimony.  We will do this.  We will put our trust in a God of lasting miracles and allow him to create in us, perfection.

We will become.

We will face our Father.

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