Monday, December 12, 2016

HANDS


There it was again, that old familiar wake-up call: a wave of nausea followed by a jolt of pain and then the rush of anxiety.  This journey through RA/Fibromyalgia has left me well acquainted with the Night Watches of Anxiety.  But this time, a word followed closely on the heels of the normal rush: HANDS, and it came so insistently that I felt there must be something my Lord wanted to uncover inside of my thoughts.  


And then it all came back in a flood: this is the week for my husband's hand surgeries. After all these months of the RA attacking MY hands, and the pain and swelling, and even the residual tendon damage left after my meds have begun to bring me relief, now we must face the surgeries to repair carpal tunnel damage in both of my HUSBAND'S wrists. Simultaneously.  


Are you asking me to examine my hands, Lord?
Or are you trying to teach me
more
about YOUR hands?


A few months ago, a dear blogging friend, Trudy Den Hoed, wrote a beautiful blogpost about looking up and trusting that God is holding us. As the pain and anxiety rushed through me, the words of her post and the song she had posted were also running through my mind, bringing great comfort in the middle of the night.


My mind and body found peace as the Lord brought STILLNESS to the night watch again. But when I woke this morning, the word HANDS was still echoing in my thoughts. 


Yes, Lord, I trust you.
You have us
and 
You hold us.

But where is the foundation
of my knowing that?
What is the reason
I know your hands
are safe?

I know that my hands
are weak.
Forever
I am left with a 
reminder
of what disease
has done to my body.

How can I hold onto
YOUR hands
when my hands
can not hold close
to anything?


And then I knew. This weakness left behind in me, forever keeps my gaze fixed upward. There is only ONE who has the strength, enough to win salvation for me. And this ONE left HIS HOME in Heaven to make HIS HOME in ME.
 

Sing to the Lord a new song,
    for he has done marvelous things;
his right hand and his holy arm
    have worked salvation for him.

Psalm 98:1 NIV 

 

My hands may be weak. My husband's hands may be damaged. But we were never meant to work the healing necessary on our own. Jesus is the only safe one to hold onto us. And Jesus is the only one who holds out God's Salvation 

for me

and for my husband

and for you.








I am linking this week over at these great sites:
#TellHisStory Jennifer Dukes Lee 
#TeaAndWordTuesday Meg Weyerbacher 





 



12 comments:

  1. Bettie, I'm so sorry for all your pain and anxiety. That must be so difficult to wake up like that. But I'm so grateful God brought stillness. I'm so humbled that He would use one of my past posts and the song. It brings tears to my eyes. I had to listen to that song again. Also to this one by Sandi Patti. How blessed we are to be in His Almighty Hands! In them there is peace and rest for our storm-tossed souls. I'm sorry about your husband, too. I pray the surgery goes well and his hands will heal quickly. May we remember we are in the palm of His hands! Love and hugs to you, my friend!

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    1. Trudy, Thank you for your sweet thoughts and encouragement! As much as I don't like to be awakened with that anxiety and pain, I am so thankful when Jesus stirs my heart to remember good words that I have read! There are times when I feel that everything I read is evaporating into the "fibro-fog" but then He reminds that He is even holding onto my memories of His good words. And then my heart is stilled. I appreciate your prayers so much, as we approach my husband's surgery on Thursday. I know that "God's got this" too! Love and Hugs my friend! xoxo

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  2. Bettie, it's horrible to be jerked awake by nausea and pain, but it's also a wonderful thing when God chooses to alert us to His night-watch presence in the midnight hours. When words stay in our minds like they did for you, it's always good to pay attention to them. God often gives us small smiles like this, little indicators of His tender loving care for us.
    And you and your husband really need a reminder this week that reassures you how safe you both are because you're being held fast in the hands of God. Though we never know what another day will bring, we can take comfort from knowing God has already gone before us to prepare the way.
    It was good to reread Trudy's beautiful post again and to listen to songs which speak encouragement to our wary, worried hearts. Thank you for your lovely prayer and for reminding me of these things:

    "This weakness left behind in me, forever keeps my gaze fixed upward. There is only ONE who has the strength, enough to win salvation for me. And this ONE left HIS HOME in Heaven to make HIS HOME in ME."

    So true and so comforting! Praying for your husband's op to go well and for his recovery to be uneventful and swift. May you both have an ever deepening sense of just how much you are being held, sustained and given grace enough for the busy days ahead. Blessings and hugs to you, sweet friend! xo ��

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    1. Dear Joy, Oh, your words mean so much to me because I know that you have walked paths of weakness, and of having to trust God with your husband's weakness as well. And when we can't see what's ahead, but can see that a deeper trial is awaiting us, even then He has "already gone before us to prepare the way." I am so grateful for your prayers. And I am so amazed at the way that God brings His connections to us, through these pages that we share with each other. Isn't He so faithful to us, stirring up good memories and true words, when our own minds feel flooded with that anxiety? I am reminded now of your Haiku for today: "Holy Spirit Sighs" May He bless your days with more of His Gifts my friend! Hugs xoxo

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  3. Hi Bettie,
    Oh my -- I do feel for your husband with carpal tunnel -- it can be so painful! I hope his recovery is quick since I know he is a great encouragement and help to you.

    But isn't it true that our challenges cause us to lean more deeply on God and trust his outcome in our lives? So easy to say yet difficult to walk through and trust while we're in the midst! Praying for you dear friend and hoping that God's beautiful presence overshadows you and lifts you up to experience the sweet joys of this season! xoxo

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    1. Dear Valerie,
      Thank you for your prayers so much! Yes, you are so right that these challenges "cause us to lean more deeply on God and trust his outcome in our lives." I am daily offering those anxieties back to Him, and waiting to see the outcome that He has planned. Isn't it amazing the things He uses to bring our reliance back to Him? Just when I think that surely I have learned that lesson, He shows me new depths of trust that I need to find. And, HE comes in such sweet ways then, doesn't HE? Blessings to you this Season also, my friend! xoxo

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  4. Sorry to hear you and your husband are going through all this! Prayers for you both!

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    1. Thank you so much for your prayers! I appreciate all of the encouragement so much!

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  5. "This weakness left behind in me, forever keeps my gaze fixed upward. There is only ONE who has the strength, enough to win salvation for me. And this ONE left HIS HOME in Heaven to make HIS HOME in ME." Amen, Bettie! Thanks for this encouraging reminder. Sometimes my hands really hurt and sometime my feet, but when I am weak it does force my gaze upwards and He gives me strength. Blessings to you, dear sister! Hugs! xo

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    1. Dear Gayl, I am sorry that you must also deal with hand and feet pain! Oh, but may we learn to be all the more glad for our weaknesses, so that we can boast in HIS strength, like the Apostle Paul did. I am so thankful for all of your encouragement too, my friend! xoxo

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  6. I prayed for you both and I hope you feel God's presence more than ever in this season. Thank you so much for sharing your life with us. The waking up in the middle of the night, the feeling your husband's pain, the asking God what is He trying to show you...I know of these. I hope you both experience relief though,friend. Keep up the faith and know your words are helping people out there. Blessings, Bettie!

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    1. Dear Meg, Thank you so much for your prayers! They are especially meaningful to me now, as it has been so recent that your own husband was in such a deep trial and pain. And your encouragement to keep sharing is especially helpful now also; when I am weary, it's easy to feel that I cannot keep moving forward one more inch! But then God brings just the right sweet words from a friend! :-) Blessings to you this Christmas Week dear sister! Hugs!

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