Thursday, March 16, 2006

In Your Presence, O God

Thank you for your outpouring of love and prayers. This has been such a difficult evening. I always wondered what went on past 9:30 p.m. -- now I know. The trash man picks trash up at 1:30 in the morning. That's just not right. Fortunately, while my spirit is wounded, it appears that I still have a small sense of humor, and I'm finding a lot of humor in these poor waste management people running around in the middle of the night dumping our trash, while we should presumably be curled up fast asleep in a warm bed.

We received "the call" around 5 pm yesterday from another cousin. Evidently, our cousing shot himself at 11:00 am, and was found by a postman. We knew immediately that we had to be by the side of our mourning Aunt and Uncle, and our cousins two sisters and their husbands, along with our other Aunts and Uncles and gaggle of cousins.

My husband asked me not to go to far from him, because he just didn't know how to handle this. Or rather, how he would handle himself. I assured him I would not leave his side. Little did I know that my heart would be ripped in two. I assumed that my husband meant that he didn't know what to say to our grieving family. I was wrong. We arrived at their home, walked in, hugged some relatives, and I went into the other room to hug our Aunt. I stepped away for a minute to see who had or son, only to hear someone heaving gut wrenching sobs. I was startled. I turned around, and saw my husband in his Aunt's arms. Sobbing from the bottom of his soul. I can honestly say that my husband is a man of God. He knows in whom his salvation lays. He is strong. He is faithful. And, he has shed a few tears in his life. But in all my life, and I've known him for over 22 years, which is more than half of my life, I have NEVER known my husband to cry as he did last night. It just broke me.

And if things weren't already bad... they got worse. For us. We left there around 9:30, because we had to get Hunter into bed. And then, we both dropped into bed, totally emotionally spent... For some reason, I woke up at midnight. I didn't hear any sounds coming from the monitor. The house was quiet. But I decided to get up and check on Hunter. I passed my hand across his forehead, and felt something caked to his face. Then I felt his cheek. It was wet and gooey. I felt his bed ... wet, too. He had, at some time during the night, thrown up... many times. He was covered in vomit. I called for my husband to help me, and I laid him down on the changing table to put new jammies on him, when he threw UP again. Straight up. And trust me when I say... what goes up must come down. All over his face. So, I sat him up, and tried to clean his face with my hands, and he threw up again. All over me. And his changing table.

Needless to say, this was not what we needed tonight. But, since the stomach virus did not consult me first before attacking my child, we did what any other half asleep (read dead on their feet) parents would do in the middle of the night. We give him a bath. We ripped the bed apart (thank goodness for double layering sheets and waterproof crib pads). We filled an extra large capacity washer with blankets, sheets, wedge covers and parts, clothing, and towels. And collapse yet again in bed. Only this time, I couldn't sleep.

My mind and heart were just too consumed with grief, my hands full with a sick child, I'm feeling a wee bit nauseas my self, and I'm heavy hearted for my husband, bless his heart.

The only thing that comes to my mind, other than streams of prayers, are lyrics to a song ... I really connect to music. Especially scripture to music. And, it's one of my husband's favorite worship songs... In Your Presence, O God -- Words and Music by Lynn DeShazo, performed by Travis Cottrell on the Unashamed Love Worship CD. I'm not sure how to link you to a full sample you can listen to, but if you're interested, you can find a partial sample here at -- just click on song number 9.

In Your presence, that's where I am strong; In Your presence, O Lord my God. In Your presence, that's where I belong. Seeking Your face; touching Your grace; in the cleft of the Rock; in Your presence O God.

I want to go where the rivers can not overflow me, where my feet are on the rock;
I want to hide where the blazing fire can not burn me, in Your presence O God.

I want to hide where the flood of evil can not reach me, where I'm covered by the blood;
I want to be where the schemes of darkness can not touch me, In Your presence O God.

You are my firm foundation, I trust in You all day long. I am Your child and Your servant,
and You are my strength and my song, You're my song --

Seeking Your face, touching Your grace. In the cleft of the Rock -- In Your presence O God.

Hallelujah. It is truly in Him -- in His presence -- that we find our strength. Thank you all for your continued prayers. They matter. A lot.


Pam said...

Oh dear! I pray God will sustain you all today and bring quick healing to little Hunter. I also pray your presence today is a balm to the soul of your sweet husband. May He use you a special way to minister to your man.

kpjara said...

I don't pretend to think that I could understand God's ways or that God would bring anything but good and light and life to us...though I do know He will divert our attention when we are struggling to move forward.

Stand in your grief and stand by your husband and family in their grief...while continuing to do what you do...believe, pray, love, serve, praise, worship and heal!

He is the one true God holding your family in His palm of love and life!

someone else said...

Whatever do people do without a faith to lean on in times like these? I have a stitchery which reads "For heights and depths no words can reach, music is the soul's own speech." It can touch our hearts in magical ways. During a really dark time in our life, it seemed that we couldn't even catch our breath. We sang a chorus in church with the words "This is the air I breathe; Your Holy Spirit living in me". It seemed like we couldn't breathe for awhile. The Lord took on that job for us. What a blessing! And blessings on your family.

Stacey said...

I will continue to be praying for you and your family. What a tough thing to deal with. I'm so sorry for all that is happening in your lives.

Unknown said...

I am so, so sorry. My heart aches reading your pain. Rest in His arms and let Him carry you.

Sherry said...

Your family is lucky to have a caring mama and wife.

Rachelle said...

Hugs to you and your family during this time! Many prayers coming your way.

Anonymous said...

Oh, Gibee, I'm just now catching up on this heartbreaking story. Sweet friend, you and my family have my prayers. God IS faithful, and He WILL be glorified, even in these dark circumstances. Praying also that Hunter will be well soon. Keep us all posted.

Kim from Hiraeth said...

Praying for dear little Hunter, too.


Anonymous said...

It's so hard to find words to say to you. I wish I could have been there last night to be able to say,"go to bed, I'll clean up the vomit," I care THAT much. You and your family are in my prayers and now Hunter too for a quick recovery. May the Lord pour His love and grace over you until you are awash in Him.

Chilihead2 said...

GiBee, I don't know what to say. I'm just so sorry about everything. I hope that you and Hunter are well soon. Please know that I am thinking of you all.

Perri said...

I am so sorry for your loss. I will be holding your family up in prayer during the difficult days ahead.

Donnetta said...

Ps. 34: 18(NIV) "The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit."

Ps. 34:18(The message): "If your heart is broken, you'll find GOD right there; if you're kicked in the gut, he'll help you catch your breath."

sarahgrace said...

I'm so so sorry to hear of things going from bad to worse. You are doing the best thing to keep your eyes on God, and you have a lot of prayers going up for you.

Jeana said...

SO sorry! Don't know how I missed this yesterday, but I am praying for you and your family.

Carol said...

Please keep us posted on how little Hunter is doing. These next few days are going to be tough. It's good that your husband allows himself to grieve - so many men fight against showing emotion until it's downright unhealthy.

I hope you get some rest, friend.

flipflop said...

I'm so sorry. May God sustain you.

Kristen said...

Oh, wow. I don't even know what to say. I am so sorry for you and your husband and your family. And for little Hunter. That's so much to handle. Hold strong to those words and I will keep you and yours in my thoughts and prayers.

Shalee said...

"Keep your eyes on Jesus who, because of the joy set before Him, endured the cross. Focus on Him so that you will not grow weary and lose heart."

I'll pray that God give you and your family strength to continue to endure each of these trials. God is faithful and He will help you through all of it! Love, love, love to you.