I stood, my arms raised high, tears in my eyes. Before the throne of God above, I have a strong and perfect plea…
In my early twenties… teens barely behind me… I remembered.
I just wanted to write books for other kids who were hurting, too.
Somehow a stranger gave me the money to stand there… in the midst of the largest publishing conference in California (it’s a story, let me tell ya).
And now, my heart pounding, my arms raised high…
Next to me stood the woman who’d just told me she believed in my dream to publish these books. Like—with a real publisher. The journalism student in me couldn’t even process it.
This woman was a literary agent I’d wanted to stalk for years. Also, my friend, Suzie, promised to kick my butt if I didn’t get over my nerves and talk to this woman.
I have a strong and perfect plea…
Suddenly my pounding heart was replaced with complete peace.
Even if this dream was just that—a dream—and even if everything fell flat—and even if it was just a coincidence that God used a stranger to pay every dime for me to be at this conference—I had a strong and perfect plea.
The measure of my success wasn’t the human standard I work for every day (although I will work, very very hard to make his name big). The measure of success was Jesus—my strong and perfect plea.
That was several years, several books, and several kids ago.
But I woke up this morning with dark circles under my eyes.
It’s been a stretch of a week. Most of it was spent typing in the dark, doing the marketing thing when the kids were in bed, and lying on the floor playing Barbies while the room was spinning thanks to a trial of a new antiseizure meds. (Just temporary side effects.)
I don’t know where you are today with your dreams. I do know God put them in your heart. Whatever you’re working on—however you’re reflecting how big his name is—I want you to know that in the end,
You have a strong and perfect plea.
You always wonder if it’s going to be enough. If you listened enough, paused enough, dropped down on your knees to look into her eyes enough. You wonder if when she went to sleep that night, she felt it:
Loved enough. Believed in enough.
“You are special.” I tell her this every day, because one day, sooner than I want to believe, someone will tell her she isn’t. And she will ask herself if it’s true. And the only answer she will have is what her heart tells her.
Today I wondered about Enough. It haunted me. There were deadlines, house showings, suitcases and plans and busyness. And there were two little eyes, peering at me–and one little mouth that has so often asked of late, Mom, “You ‘K?”
Not even two years old, and her heart is already wondering if I’m okay.
“That’s my job, Kiddo. Mommy gets to worry if you’re okay. Did you feel loved today?”
It’s a question her dad asks her every night–did you feel loved? She doesn’t know how to answer it yet, but someday she will. So for now, as we tuck her in with Bear securely by her side, we pray she knows…
She is enough. And we are trying our best to be the same..
I would like to thank my oldest for waking me at 5 a.m. so I could work on my proposals for this upcoming book conference. Also the coffeemaker for the sheer moment of terror when it malfunctioned because I’d plugged in the toaster oven instead.
I still remember the moment I was sucked under, the current burning my eyes as my back scraped against the ocean floor.
Talk about exfoliation… but that was the last thing on my mind.
Did anyone see me get in the water?
Could I scream if I needed to?
How many waves were coming after me, chasing me, pulling me down?
It seems like a lot of us have been pulled down lately, in this community.
We’ve lost life.
We’ve lost relationships.
We’ve lost trust.
I’ve watched my dearest go through separations, divorces, funerals.
I’ve had a few deaths of my own; quiet ones of the soul… ones that can’t be published here… ones I’ve needed to grieve alone for the sake of the privacy of others.
Yet every day I wake up to these blue-eyed wonders (here is one) and I know that when they call me Mama (and a few other names I shouldn’t repeat here), they trust me.
I’ve spent years holding them in the night, offering them my chest when they were small and a bag of Cheetos the moment their immune systems could handle it.
They are my miracles and the ones I thought were only a whisper in a prayer, because my voice couldn’t even be raised in faith.
In asking for them I discovered a hand in the dark, the hand of the One who rescued and to this day rescues me from my dark waters.
I don’t know what your heart needs tonight, but I want you to know you’re not alone.
Maybe you’re praying for a miracle. Maybe you’re simply praying for air.
My heart is with you, and while I cannot walk beside you tonight, I know the One who can.
He is my love, and He is my exceeding great reward.
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