uncomfortably close call

the other morning at 4:45, penelope suddenly started crying, which is unusual for her now that she's sleeping through the night.  so todd went in to check on her and discovered that she somehow got the reigns of one of atticus' horse toys wrapped around her neck and it was choking her (still not sure how it got in her bed and around her neck).  he tried to get it off her neck, but the more he tried, the tighter it got.  he ran in to get me, and by the time i came to check, she was gasping for air.  i quickly got the scissors and cut the rope from around her neck.

all todd and i could do at that point was just thank jesus for saving our daughter.  there are so many stories of random accidents not turning out so well.  if it had just been a bit tighter and didn't allow her enough breath to cry...if i had just forgotten to turn on the monitor like i sometimes do...if we just let her 'cry it out' as would've been the case if she wasn't in the habit of sleeping so well...

and in that moment, i heard god say, 'see? i have you.  i have her.'  which was a relief, but also a source of conviction.  because prayer doesn't come easily for me.  at all.  and part of the reason is because i don't always believe that it really does anything.  (it's not right, it's just honest.)  and i just saw all those prayers i had prayed over her answered.  deliberately.  by a loving god.

but i also realized that so often when i have prayed - for her safety from evil people, from evil forces, from accidents and trauma and injury and disease - i have really been praying, in a sense, for her protection from god.  a sovereign god who allows really crappy stuff to happen and pass it off as 'good' without obligatory explanation.  from a god who has allowed so many families to suffer the injury and loss of their babies. 

believing in god is no walk in the park.  he is no crutch.  it is a scary, vulnerable, hard line to walk at times, knowing that this god you love and worship really is in charge - and is not at your beck and call.  he gets to call the shots.  he gets to determine what is 'good'  - not you.  he gets to determine what is 'best' - not you.  he gets to determine what is necessary and big-picture and glorifying.  not you.  not me.  and the control-freak, self-sufficient, self-protecting, prideful girl in me hates that and holds her babies too tightly in her heart out of distrust.

but in that moment, i just felt god saying, i am trustworthy.  i am not out to hurt you.  i am trustworthy.

and that's not to say that he's trustworthy to bow to my whims about how my life should go.  it's just that he really DOES love me.  he really DOES love my kids, and he did give them to me as a blessing.  he doesn't take that lightly.  but he knows what's best better than i do, and he is faithful to do for them what is best for them.  and for me.  and i'm still guilty of self-protection in favor of vulnerability before god...but i have a clearer picture of how ridiculous that is now.


The Grout Family said...

how scary!!! i am SO glad Penelope is okay. Our God is so gracious and trustworthy! :D

Saved by grace said...

I often find myself praying and then thinking I hope God doesn't do something to my children to make me understand truly trusting Him even during the storms of life. Or how truly trusting Him with their lives, means me giving up my perceived control over them. Or how I pray that God would shower His goodness over us but that goodness would be what I define as goodness. Geesh, sometimes I feel some faithless... Then I am reminded that God is constantly refining me with fire and molding me and changing my heart and thoughts and deep desires.

Oh man, I better stop before I am a mess of tears! God is good, all the time, no matter what, all the time, He is good!

I am glad God protected Penelope!