I had to laugh. There was no getting around it. Living with my helplessness had become the hugest laughing matter I could conceive. Not that I had become a superstar. I still had times when the imagined zits on my face, plump nose, and head full of cowlicks made me feel like an idiot merely suitable to take out trash and sweep the basement floor. But deep in my heart I heard an almost silent, unexplained and nonsensical chuckle. Do I laugh or cry?
I’m sure you will agree with me when I say life is not always clear-cut? Some days the black clouds hover over our rooftops and we look up to see nothing but trouble. We pull down the blinds, go back to bed, and cover our heads, escaping the darkness.
“God, I can’t take anymore!”– and that’s the end of my prayer, as if I was running low on strength, dependent on the crumbs at the bottom of my barrel.
After the short prayer I do some self-talk: “YOU can do it. YOU can make it through this painful mess.”
Oh my! Thunder. Lightning. My electricity is out. No lights. I plop my body on the couch, hoping to be comforted by the overstuffed pillows that have served my tired soul for years. INSTEAD, tears of anger and fear flood my eyes, fall down my cheeks, and dry on their own. I hear something at my window, get up and look. It’s a hurt bird. I can’t touch it. I would make it worse for the little one. It has to depend on God–like me.
I cry out, “God, please help me– and my little friend. We can’t make it on our own. Please.”
The little bird suddenly takes off, and I smile, and I laugh, and I cry tears of thanksgiving.
“I love you, my child. Tell me where you hurt,” God whispers in my heart.
“God, please forgive me for not coming to You when I fell on my face.”
He filled me with His comfort and strength. Then God stood me on my feet and directed my steps, one at a time, with His feet in my shoes, too.
“Hope fills the afflicted soul with such inward joy and consolation, that it can laugh while tears are in the eye, sigh and sing all in a breath; it is called ‘The rejoicing of hope'” by William Gurnall (1617 – October 12, 1679), an English author and clergyman born at King’s Lynn, Norfolk.