God, Are You Really There?
Things were really looking up. Thursday night, we went to Stevens Point to do a little shopping and have dinner with Chris and Jenna. I felt well Friday, so I visited a friend, went to the library, and then to the craft shop/artists' studio. The rest of Friday afternoon was spent baking cookies (and, yes, eating carbs), cooking dinner, and helping make sure that Minh had everything she needed for her trip that started today.
It was all good till 8pm when the migraine started. I took my meds, none of the orally. Nonetheless, the vomiting started and persisted. I tried more meds - the oral ones came up when I vomited. The others just didn't work. After about four hours, Patrick and I decided to head to the ER.
If you have to have an ER experience, mine was a pretty good one. The doctor was in doing her exam before the nurse had even done an assessment. I'd seen the doc before and trusted her. We agreed on a plan of attack and I had meds going within a few minutes. Unfortunately, it took a good hour to get the nausea calmed down and another hour for the pain to subside. We were threre for a total of four hours. And so fortunate to be there one a quiet night.
After six hours of sleep here at home, I woke up feeling much better. So I've been strongly requested (by the hubby) to do very little today for the next few days. Fine by me. Throwing up uses lots of mucles that are quite sore. And gives me throat pain. I don't feel well, but LSU won the football game. That's something.
A couple of days ago, I was writing about a passage from Habakkuk about how when life sucks we still hang on to God because we've got experience with him. We can still say that God is good because we know that he's always been good before and that our sacred scriptures promise us good things in the future.
Days like last night and today are such a challenge to that. Not only am i asking if God is good, but I'm wondering if God even sees me! I think back to the story of Hagar in the desert in Genesis when she leaves Abram's house after becoming pregnant with Ishmael, but an angel comes to her and tells her that El Roi, the God Who Sees, has seen her and has plans for her and her child. I'm starting to wonder if God sees me. Or maybe I just need to eat fewer carbs. Who knows?
The lectionary readings for tomorrow are instructive. One is from Job, a book I lived in for several years after my diagnosis.
Job 19:23-27a 19:23 "O that my words were written down! O that they were inscribed in a book!
19:24 O that with an iron pen and with lead they were engraved on a rock forever!
19:25 For I know that my Redeemer lives, and that at the last he will stand upon the earth;
19:26 and after my skin has been thus destroyed, then in my flesh I shall see God,
19:27a whom I shall see on my side, and my eyes shall behold, and not another.
I love how he can say that despite everything, he knows that his Redeemer lives and will eventually stand on the earth. He doesn't yet know the end of the story, which is a relatively happy one - he gets a new family, although nothing can replace losing your original family.
Then, there's this passage from Psalms:
Psalm 17:1-9 17:1 Hear a just cause, O LORD; attend to my cry; give ear to my prayer from lips free of deceit.
17:2 From you let my vindication come; let your eyes see the right.
17:3 If you try my heart, if you visit me by night, if you test me, you will find no wickedness in me; my mouth does not transgress.
17:4 As for what others do, by the word of your lips I have avoided the ways of the violent.
17:5 My steps have held fast to your paths; my feet have not slipped.
17:6 I call upon you, for you will answer me, O God; incline your ear to me, hear my words.
17:7 Wondrously show your steadfast love, O savior of those who seek refuge from their adversaries at your right hand.
17:8 Guard me as the apple of the eye; hide me in the shadow of your wings,
17:9 from the wicked who despoil me, my deadly enemies who surround me.
I'm not going to presume to tell God that there is no sin in me, but I am willing to stand up and say that I have minimal unconfessed sin in my life. I say with the psalmist that I want to be free from illness. I don't feel like I deserve this, although if I was being a goood 5 Point TULIP Presbyterian, I'd have to admit that I don't deserve anything from God and that everything is grace. But, I am going to be bold and ask God for low pain if not an actual cure.
And, then there is this section from 2 Thessalonians 2:
2:15 So then, brothers and sisters, stand firm and hold fast to the traditions that you were taught by us, either by word of mouth or by our letter. 2:16 Now may our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father, who loved us and through grace gave us eternal comfort and good hope, 2:17 comfort your hearts and strengthen them in every good work and word.
Take a deep breath. God loves me and he sees me. If he could see a woman in the desert with a baby, I imagine he know that a 52 year old woman in Wisconsin is hating on her migraine. God has given me a community of support in friends and family. God is love and God is my hope. It doesn't feel like God is there. But, I've survived this long. I'll make till in the morning.
How are you? If you're having a rough time, I'm happy to pray with you. I have (at times, weak) faith that God is there and sees us.