Have you ever heard it? I mean audibly- like you hear your spouse or your kids. I have.
I was in the midst of one of my best tantrums. I had 4 little children who drained every ounce of energy from my being and another on the way. They left messes everywhere. Dishes were spilling out of the sink onto the counters on both sides, and the dishwasher was out of commission. Laundry had vomited out of the laundry room into (nicely color sorted) piles on my kitchen floor. I could barely walk from the garage to the dining room. I felt like I was the only one who could manage to wash a dish or change the laundry around- And that was just the kitchen.... Looking around I just lost it! I stood in that mess with tears of frustration streaming down my face seething at God for the life he had strapped me with. I let him know just how I felt- OUT LOUD. I finally went to bed, leaving the mess for the next day. I crept into bed so I would not wake up my husband- because in his defense he had spent the day wrestling lumber to build someone else's dream- and sniffled my way into sleep.
You know how you can have a conversation with a good friend and leave it hanging indefinitely- but when you pick it back up you both know what the topic is and where you where in it?
The next day we were at church. I was teaching the Children's Church and we had finished early so we decided to play a game. Since we met in a school, the children were in the gym- the perfect place for games- except for those darn irresistible bleachers. Jesse, thinking he could clear the distance between the two sets, took a flying leap-and missed. Well he mostly missed. He caught the next set with his nose. In the midst of a lot of screaming and blood I could see that he had loosed the nostril from the cheek.
I ran into the service where Sebastian was just about to start the last worship set. I rushed up to him and said something urgent like, "We need to go to the hospital." He nodded at me and then proceeded to strum the opening chord, not fully understanding what I had just said to him. I spun around and shouted, "NOW!" Well that got his attention. He just dropped his guitar and ran after me. A friend followed us out. We were fortunate enough to have driven two cars that day because I just dropped my keys in her hand and she gathered our other children and took them to her house and fed them lunch.
All the way to the urgent care center I had to hold Jesse's hands away from his face as he rubbed his bloody nose all over my shirt. All I could do was tell him how sorry I was and try to keep him calm- all the while wishing I could take that pain on myself.
Eight stitches, an antibiotic, and a nap- for both of us- later, I got around to cleaning my kitchen. Then I decided to make the kids Jello as a special treat after such a traumatic day. I was up to my shoulders in my container cupboard, looking for those little gladware single serve guys, when I heard His voice. If I could have I would have turned around to see Him leaning back on my sink, with His arms crossed over His chest- like I do when I talk to my children. However, no man can look upon the glory of God and live to tell about it, so there I was- stuck in my cupboard. This is what He said to me:
"Do you see now? Do you see how much you love them? I love you that much. So much that I gave you my own Son." There was no reproach, no scolding. Just the same kind of soothing voice I had used with my own hurting child earlier that day. Once again I had tears streaming down my face, but this time they were tears of repentance and of forgivenness.