29 August 2010

When life gives you lemons...

It seems I've been making bucket-fulls of lemonade lately. Frankly, sometimes what life has been handing me seems a bit worse than lemons. So...my sister and nephew and I started coming up with "When life gives you poop" sayings. My quick-witted nephew came up with, "When life gives you poop, make pottery!" Disgusting? Yes. But, oh it makes me laugh! And well, I came up with something equally as gross, but in a different way, "When life gives you poop, make frozen hot chocolate!" Truth is, I recently found this yummy recipe for this cool tasty treat (no poop needed) and I made myself some this morning in the midst of a very difficult 24 hours. Here's some other ways I've been learning, albeit somewhat slowly, to make lemonade or frozen hot chocolate, if you will. And believe me, you will! (Linda, that was just for you!)

When life started giving me too many trips to the med center for clinic visits and fun things like ekgs, bubble tests, stress tests, echocardiograms, pulmonary function tests, CT scans, blood work, etc. I started going to The Chocolate Bar or to get a Crave cupcake (better than Sprinkles) afterwards. And even better, I had coffee and lunches and retail therapy with incredible friends/chauffeurs/moral support/scribes. :)

When life gave me a day at the hospital for a right heart cath, I brought my mama for a 10 day visit from New Jersey! Yea!

When life gave me pulmonary arterial hypertension: a life-threatening and non-curable (by man) yet treatable (in often life-alterable and painful and emotionally difficult ways I'm discovering), I became a magazine, book, and Redbox junkie to keep me from freaking out when I'm trying to go to sleep. Okay, so this one is not quite to the lemonade stage.

When life gave me an angiogram and implanted IVC filter, I tried to enjoy a day out of the office and quality time with my sister and my blue cuddly blanket that says Methodist Hospital.

When life gave me oxygen tanks and a "nose hose" when I'm walking around the neighborhood, I made several calls to the Dr's office to get smaller tanks and a trip to pick out an overpriced but extremely cute Vera Bradley backpack to carry Roxy around in. Side note: Roxy is my very cute and stylish petite oxygen tank who is very much unlike Oxy Moron who is the very awkward and heavy oxygen tank on that awful metal cart.

When life gave me 5 days of twice daily injections in my stomach, I went to the Boedekers after Saturday night worship for my first injection and dinner and football and conversation and mama and papa bear hugs.

And when life gave me Coumadin...hmmm, any ideas? I am leaving for a FABULOUS VACATION tomorrow with a fabulous friend, but what about after that?

Okay, so truth is that my Jehovah covenant-keeping God is giving me just a sip of lemonade at just the right moments to keep me from totally drowning in all this junk, and I'm not making much of the lemonade at all. And I have to believe in some mysterious way that God is moved to respond on my behalf because of many of you who are fighting in intercession for me. Even though I don't always feel it, I know your prayers are working and that God is indeed with me. And He must, because his Word promises, be working good for me and glory for Himself out of this. One day I'll be able to see. As much as I love to savor the sour sweetness of a Chick-fil-A lemonade, I'd love to see his glory made known all the more!

Now, don't be thinking me more spiritual than I am just because I said that. Truth is, I was curled up on the floor shut up in my sister's closet earlier today. My faith is minuscule. I am too prone to pity parties and self-absorption. I am not rejoicing in my suffering. BUT, only by His grace I am choosing to believe right now in this moment that my God does keep his promises. Choosing to believe that this present suffering will pale in comparison to his glory to be revealed. Choosing to believe that like Jesus, for the joy set before me I can endure this cross - these moments that feel like deaths to me. Choosing to believe that the same power that raised Christ Jesus from the dead lives in me. Choosing to believe that the Holy Spirit of Promise, my Advocate alongside me and the very seal that I belong to God forever is near, within, surrounding me through every doctor visit, every procedure, every phone call with painful news, every stomach injection, every walk with oxygen, every moment of fear, panic, anger and sorrow. My Father, my Jesus, my Comforter is near. My soul, wait thou only upon God, for my expectation (my HOPE) is from Him. Lord, I believe. Help my unbelief.


cal+claire said...

Wow Rebekah, I didn't know everything had gotten so crazy. I'm going to be keeping you in my prayers daily.

Anders Branderud said...


You wrote: My Father, my Jesus, my Comforter is near. My soul, wait thou only upon God (..)”

I want to give a comment on that:
If you read the prophecy in Isaiah 7-9 in Hebrew and related verses of the Hebrew Bible you will see that king Hizkiah was a partial fulfilment of that prophecy and he was a human, and not divine. Thus, neither the Messiah would be divine. The historical Messiah called Rabbi Yeshua taught his followers to pray to the Creator, not to pray to Jesus. One is forbidden to pray to any human according to Torah; and one is forbidden to pray to or worship Jesus. [Documentation

Following the historical man, the Messiah called Yehoshua, requires according to the Jewish Bible, to follow the Torah – the Instruction manual of the Creator; and this leads oneself into an immensely meaningful relationship with the Creator – blessed is He. I highly recommend you that!

Anders Branderud