Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Beauty For Ashes

I have been drawn to Isaiah a lot lately. I used to find Isaiah rather intimidating, but lately it has come alive for me. It is pure poetry.

I have especially found myself reading chapter 61 over and over and over. It has been especially moving recently as our family has dealt with tragedy.

My sweet niece, Hannah Paige, was born on June 9th. Her mom, who is one of my best friends and favorite people, had been having some problems with bleeding because of placenta previa. On Saturday, they had to deliver Hannah by c-section because her mom was losing too much blood. She was only at about 21 weeks gestation and survived for about 20 minutes. I won't get into too much of the story, as it's not mine to tell.

But I have been surprised by how tender my feelings have been over the last few days. I feel comforted and blessed by an inner knowledge that families are forever, that sweet Hannah is not forever lost. But that doesn't always make right now any easier. My heart has been open and feeling so deeply for her sweet family, my brother and sister and nephews who I love beyond words.

And I have been re-feeling the loss of the sweet child I miscarried almost two years ago. And holding my sweet Jack, also, and feeling something akin to survivor's guilt. Baby guilt, maybe?

So, I keep coming back to Isaiah. And the imagery is beautiful.

The Savior was sent to "bind up the broken hearted", to "proclaim liberty to the captives".

There will be beauty for ashes.

The oil of joy for mourning.

The garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness.

Through affliction we can become as trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord.

The old wastes and desolations will be built up. Restored.

For our shame, we will receive a double portion.

We will rejoice in our afflictions as well as our joys.

All will be well, sanctified, consecrated for good in the end.

What beautiful words these are. And though the pain of right now may be so much to handle, I have no doubt that all things work together for our good.

There is not a pain, an affliction, a mistake in my life that I have not felt has been turned to a higher purpose, consecrated and made sacred.

There is nothing to fear, truly, for all will be made whole, made sacred, made good in the end. Loss is a gift every bit as much as any joy.

And so I weep and give the mother earth of my salty tears, hoping that I am truly mourning with those who mourn and that I can comfort and love and hold a space for healing and for joy.

Because I believe the words of Isaiah. I believe that, no matter what happens to us, we will be bound up, blessed and strengthened. And I would not trade a single loss I've endured for any amount of joy, for I know that in the end I would be left with less.


Frog Thinks said...

many thoughts for all... and certainly prayers for your friend/sister. Baby guilt.. it's aweird sense... a reason to delete my blog I suppose. Because I received so many emails about the same. But, guilt is horrid-- in any form. I do love what you shared... I'll hav eto look it up for myself, perhaps it could help get my mind in a right & good place.

BTW- your sis looks like ya! :)

Kris said...

My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. That is an extremely hard thing to go through. But I think you have found the right place to go to work out your emotions.

brightonwoman said...

I can relate to the 'baby guilt'...and I've been on both sodes of it. I've been the empty-bellied and empty-armed momma who hated all people with babies, and I've been the mom with my long-awaited baby watching someone else lose theirs... to everything there is a time, and a purpose for every season...