Friday, January 8, 2010

Update 1/8/10 2 months since crash

Dear friends,

In the words of Billy Joel, in one of the few songs he wrote that didn't make the top 40: "They say that these are not the best of times, but they're the only times I've ever known." Stephen and I went to church tonite, for the 5th night of prayer to seek the Great One for 2010. The theme was "Seek first the kingdom of God, and all these things will be added as well." We prayed for a right perspective on our economy, our careers and our callings. It was incredibly refreshing to hear Dan the Dynamic talk about money as a means to a great end. Not surprisingly from God's perspective that end is OTHERS. People. As brother Dan said, there are children to be fed, orphanages to be built, wells to be dug, etc... How we need great fortune makers and selfless captains of industry! Turn on the news and you'll hear what happens when wealth becomes an end. Open the pages of scripture, and you'll hear the possibilities money offers simply as a means. For sure I need that teaching as much as anyone. May I keep it ever before me regardless of what the economy looks like. There's One who isn't ruffled by any of it.

One of the odd things about post trauma is a tendency to get chilly. Pre-ortho-disaster Stephen was always overheated. He never used his side of our electric blanket, he never wore a sweatshirt, he always kept the house so cool my brother once asked "Do you keep the heat for the good company? It's like a meat locker in here." Now the man actually keeps the house warm enough for me! There are several medical explanations for this, but the main one I've heard is "less movement equals less heat". Remember, Stephen was very active prior to November 8. His overall good health was a factor in his early (and current) recovery. He exercised every day, walked every work day, and liked to be going strong from morning to night. So his internal thermostat has been reset. But only for now. I can't wait for him to complain about the covers again and drive me crazy turning down the heat.

To see my dear husband and daughter smiling, watching a movie together on the couch, even with their injuries, is pure relief. I can't help but remember both of them intubated, struggling to survive, bloody and unconscious. I think back on starting up the dishwasher at midnite, then sitting down to write in this forum after 2 trips to Sunnyview in a day. There have been many bumps on this steep pilgrim road since November 8. But God's unmitigated grace has been given to us. That doesn't mean I'm never sad, or angry, or confused. But it does mean I'm never alone. Neither are you.

In some ways I hardly remember my life before November 8. It occurred to me today that one person's bad decision set the course for my days. But in reality, all of life is full of twists and turns. The Great One sees them all, and as I've said before, He somehow mixes man's free will and His sovereignty and brings us through the beauty and the mess. We choose how we'll see it. I confess I haven't always chosen positively. But I'm learning and growing as I make the climb. Thank you for your patience with me as I wangle my way along the sojourners highway. Thanks for wangling along with with me. (That's my new word. I've been using it all the time!)

Your wangling friend on the pilgrim road,



Susan said...

Hi Loriann,

Here's another email from someone on our prayer chain: I don't really know any of these people--and you probably don't either--but they're still all in it with you!

P.S. I'm praying about whatever it was that went wrong yesterday.
(email below)

Message for LoriAnn
Fri, January 8, 2010 7:35:54 PM
Kim Otis

Hi Sue,
Could you please pass the following along for me - I am on the Calvary Tabernacle prayer chain.

Dear Loriann,

I have been receiving your updates and have been praying for your family since your accident. We have never met, as far as I know. I just wanted to convey my most sincere appreciation for your amazing words, your honest emotion, your unbelievable faith and your deep, deep love for your family. I can not imagine how difficult it must be to be the strength your family relies on every day, and I wonder if you have any idea how your writings have affected people who have never seen your face. In my daily goings on, as the mother of three small children (9, 6 and 3) I have many moments of frustration - not getting out the door on time, people not responding as soon as I would want them to, not following directions, normal kid stuff. My perspective about those things, while still aggravating at times is completely different, and I pray daily, hourly even, for patience. You have had to be so incredibly patient watching the ones you love recover, thankfully, and keep moving forward. Your grace and faith have taught me lessons, brought me to tears, and given me a clear vision of what a strong woman of God you are. I am so thankful for your transparency in this journey, and will hold you and your family in my prayers for all time.

All the best,
Kim Otis

Susan said...

Hi Loriann,

I just had to share this with you (my brother sent it to me after someone sent it to him). It'll take me awhile before I can take it all in . . .


by Denise Levertov

To lie back under the tallest
oldest trees. How far the stems
rise, rise
before ribs of shelter

To live in the mercy of God. The complete sentence too adequate, has no give.
Awe, not comfort. Stone, elbows of
stony wood beneath lenient
moss bed.

And awe suddenly
passing beyond itself. Becomes
a form of comfort.
Becomes the steady
air you glide on, arms
stretched like the wings of flyingfoxes.
To hear the multiple silence
of trees, the rainy
forest depths of their listening.

To float, upheld,
as salt water
would hold you,
once you dared.

To live in the mercy of God.

To feel vibrate the enraptured

waterfall flinging itself
unabating down and down
to clenched fists of rock.
Swiftness of plunge,
hour after year after century,
O or Ah
uninterrupted, voice

To breathe
spray. The smoke of it.
of steelwhite foam, glissades
of fugitive jade barely perceptible. Such passion—
rage or joy?

Thus, not mild, not temperate,
God’s love for the world. Vast
flood of mercy
flung on resistance.

johandav said...