Friday, November 07, 2003

One Thing I Know

"One thing I do know. I was blind, but now I see!" ~John 9:25b

I don't know much, but "one thing I do know." Jesus loves me. It always boils down to that one, sweet, simple childhood tune for me. All my thinking and analyzing reduce down to a line many Americans, even if they don’t believe its truth, at least hear as a child. To know, to understand, to realize… I am relearning this again.

Brennan Manning wrote, “To know is to be transformed by what one knows.” I would personalize that a smidge and say that for me, it is by whom one knows. I am convinced that anything I know is just chaff and husk if I know it apart from the love of Jesus for me. His love impels me, empowers me, strengthens me, encourages me, enwisens me, directs me, and shapes me. I use “me” after each to emphasize the reality and impact.

This Potter keeps His hands around me when I am on the wheel. It is my flesh under His fingernails. Even though the scraping is uncomfortable and oftentimes bruising and sometimes agony, it is always necessary. He would not impose a mark or pull across the smallest point without sure, loving purpose. Oswald Chambers is right—I go through it for the most part misunderstandingly. Clarity and understanding may or may not come in this life. We live on the underside of a tapestry where the colors are inverted, threads criss-cross, and loose strands dangle unknotted. I think it was C. S. Lewis who said the thing we’ll say most often when we get to Heaven, and the front of the tapestry is revealed, will be something like, “Ohhh, of course it had to be that way…”

I am not often proud of my behavior throughout the whole day. I am often peevish, moody, sad, anxious, gritchy, or morose. It is the awareness of His Love and purposeful abiding inside me that interjects to infuse Hope. Sometimes it is in answer to my crying out. Sometimes He sets it in my mind, and I’m taken off guard. Always though, it is welcome.

I am pauper and princess, tart and tiara, menace and marvel—a paragon of paradox. Why I would lean so heavily on my own human resources—feeble, few, and faint—is just plain sad. And yet, even as I write this, believing it all to be true, I am without self-condemnation and have NO crooked, bony finger poking into my chest. Instead, it is the same thing I am reminded of in sprinklings throughout the day:  I don’t know much, but Jesus Loves ME, this I know.

Thursday, November 06, 2003

a year later

I found this note in a Bible I use for traveling because of its compact size. I stayed with my mother-in-law for a week while my father-in-law was in a hospital kind of facility for the analysis and evaluation of his dementia and poor circulation.

Nov. 6, 2002

Oh, Kevvie, what would we do if we were the ones in the position of your mom and dad? If you were this sick, my tears would always be on the ready too, just like your mom's are. Would I be as strong and thoughtful of others? Sometimes the intense closeness of the Holy Spirit makes me more aware of others, and I am grateful.

If I was the sick one, would you wither from worry and loneliness...? Would God impart mightily His peace--desperate grace for desperate need? Might you read to me from your Bible, sing to me (I'm sure not, but know that I would love it!), stroke my hair, look me square in the face so I could see your beautiful green eyes that have launched me into Peace so many times before...?

Kevvie, we are BLESSED. May we know it and be truly grateful. More the challenge for me than you, as I've always felt how you treasure me and want for my lifting up. Lord grant you mercy to know the same marvel of being my answer to prayer.