Face-down with soggy cheeks plastered across my cold granite counter-top.
That’s how I found myself in the fall of 2015, just shortly after Chad’s brain surgery and three months before we figured out who the real culprit was hijacking his body.
By this point we’d seen doctors for a solid year with no solid answers. By this point, money saved was money gone and more bills were arriving. By this point, I was DONE.
It was a random weekday and I’d just gotten both babies and Chad down for a nap.
Since Chad’s body was reverting back to an infant state, that time period was like single-parenting triplets.
I could have used a nap too but the bills wouldn’t pay themselves and finding quiet times to crunch numbers was truly like searching for needles in a hay stack — impossible!
I sat down at the kitchen island to begin. The silence was deafening and in that moment the weight OF. IT. ALL. hit me.
It felt like someone had just dropped a diving-bell on top of my chest.
I couldn’t breathe.
The “what if’s” hit me. The “why God why’s” followed suit. The “what are we going to do’s” rolled off my tongue as quickly as the tears rolled down my face.
My fists began to contort in a clinched position — the pounding to ensue.
I was $300.00 short of paying all our bills for the month and had NO IDEA where it was going to come from?
We still had no explanation for Chad’s motor deficits and though his brain surgery had been a success, his problems persisted and were growing worse.
We were jobless, hopeless, answerless, exhausted and now officially broke.
Our life and everything we’d built for ourselves felt like shattered glass laying all around my feet. Like all the fine China I’d meticulously loved and cared for, had been violently flung across the room by a masked assailant.
Each breath radiated pain throughout my chest. I felt like I’d been stabbed. Like I’d been in a knife-fight with this assailant.
Each thrust perforating the silver-lining I’d tried desperately to wrap my breakable-heart in over the weeks and months leading up to this day.
Each wound spewing slivers of shattered heart-chards all over my floors.
I felt an energetic shift occur in my body — heat rising up and out of my pores. The anger melted me down, reducing my spine into bent-reed position.
The tears pooled-up atop my granite island.
I plunged my face in them — baptism by fire and water I suppose.
Raspy words came up projectile, lodging themselves in my throat. I muttered them quiet and broken but with the same pain-induced pleading a mother does during child-birth…
“God help. I don’t know what we’re going to do.”
Just then, a knock came at my door.
Taring myself up out of that transcendental state, I wiped both eyes as if I’d seen a vision.
I could see a figure, tall and dark. The blur clearing some. It was our neighbor.
“Lori, we are so sorry. We just heard about Chad’s condition and wanted you to know we’re here.”
He gave me a hug, handed me a card and walked home.
I closed the door, staring hard through the crack till the last bit of sun was gone.
I didn’t want to go back.
Going back inside felt like drowning. Like the unwanted pull of a riptide –– our life, being ripped-up and pulled-apart piece-by-piece.
So, I waded back in slow, toward the kitchen. Back to the tidal pond of tears.
I opened the card and it fell out — $300.00. Exactly what I needed to finish paying my bills.
The money fell on top, absorbing my tears like it was absorbing my debt.
Jehovah Jireh — The God Who Provides
Like Abraham, this was my first introduction to Jehovah Jireh and the first of many alters I’ve built to him over the years.
It was my Genesis 22 moment. My Abrahamic experience. The first of many “rescue rams” God provided in the thick of that season.
HE IS certainly the God who rescues and he’s certainly the God who provides but he’s also the God of details.
I’ve thought over and over about the intricate details that went into his plan that day.
How He must have orchestrated the timing of that interaction right down to the second.
How just like Abraham but without the knife, the second I would surrender, raising my white flag (or tissue) toward heaven, salvation would occur.
That day, Jehovah Jireh substituted my lack with his provision, replaced my tears with his supply and in my pinnacle moment of pain-staking surrender, sent a messenger of light to hand me a ram.
— A Ram in the Thicket.