This is going to be long. I’ll do my best not to ramble.
Last night was the last session of the women’s Bible study that I led this fall. We did a twelve-week intensive look at the book of Daniel. One chapter a week. And it was hard. The women were/are incredible. This was not a study for light-weights. I don’t know what your idea of a woman’s Bible study is, but this was a group of women who came prepared (for the most part) every week. They shared and they prayed together. And this study wasn’t something that was really “about us”. The last 6 weeks were about prophecy. That’s not an easy topic. We persevered and made it through. Anyway, I digress. . .
Yesterday, as I wrote before, was really hard. I was feeling so miserable as I was getting ready to leave for Bible study. I took a couple extra minutes being sick in the bathroom before heading out the door. Carla, a friend in the study who comes early and helps me, arrived a few minutes after me. It took all of 5 minutes before I started blubbering to her. She just hugged me and prayed for me. Then she told me that she had brought all her maternity clothes for me! So, she blessed me emotionally and materially!
After our discussion time during the study, we watch a DVD that is usually about an hour long. If I’m feeling very motivated, I preview it ahead of time. My mom would always do this. I think it was because she viewed women’s ministry as her career once we flew out of the nest. I didn’t get around to previewing it this week so I didn’t know what would be included in this session.
I don’t even remember the context of the story or how it all fit together, but, Beth Moore shared a story about her daughter needing surgery during her junior year of high school and that she had to spend some time in the ICU. Beth had brought her pillow so she could spend the night “sleeping” in the ICU waiting area between times that she was allowed to be in her daughter’s room. At some point during the night, a man came into the waiting room and didn’t know that she was there. His son had been in a bad accident and was in a coma and not expected to live. The details of the story are hazy, but I think she said that he was just sobbing and she talked about the experience of facing death and how when Christ returns to fight his final battle, it would be against death, and He would be victorious.
I joked last week with the women at my table that my default response in most situations is to cry. This story just blew me away though. I was feeling so fragile already and the picture of a man sobbing in an ICU waiting room at the news of his son’s condition resonated with me. The tears kept falling and I had to seriously brace myself to keep from weeping out loud. It’s one thing to cry in front of a bunch of ladies. It’s another thing completely to start wailing! I wanted to hold it together at least a little.
When we prayed at the end of the evening, one of the women said that she would like to pray for the health of my baby. I shared with the women about how my day had been. These gracious women prayed for me and this tiny baby in my belly. The woman who prayed even asked the Lord to give the baby some of the characteristics that my mom had. It was a very sweet prayer.
That’s a very cool story, in and of itself, but that’s not all. This same woman had mentioned, in a conversation many weeks ago that she had a brain tumor at one point. After the study last night, I worked up the courage to ask her about it. She took my hand and put it on her head and she actually has, for lack of a better word, “dents” in her head from where they removed the tumor. It was not cancerous and they found it before anything serious happened. She has a miraculous story.
There were some neat blessing in between the ickyness yesterday. I don’t wish this sort of morning sickness on anyone. I certainly don’t wish morning sickness in combination with completely clogged sinuses on anyone. There is nothing like leaning over the toilet to be sick while all the pressure continues to mount in your head.
But I’m breathing better today. Thank you, Lord, and to those of you who prayed for me. I feel a little better. I was the tiniest bit productive! I started out my day with a phone call to Joyce Counihan. I’ve known her and her family for most of my life. Her husband, Roger, lost a 5 month battle with brain cancer last year. He was a dear friend of my dad’s. I had not spoken with her since Roger’s funeral, but I just wanted to call her. She is a sweet kindred spirit and understands loss in a way that most people don’t.
I’ll have more to say tomorrow. For now, I’m tired and planning to go to bed.