Where did we leave off yesterday....Oh, yeah, I remember.
It was Saturday morning, October 29th, and there I stood scanning groceries and cheap Halloween costumes, trying to sound sane and to not cry as I said, "Hello! How are you today?" At 4:30 that afternoon, a great horde of people - people I love and wanted so badly to fellowship with - were going to begin arriving at my house, and I wouldn't be there. Yes, the kids had cleaned up the house and the yard, but, nope, I still hadn't gotten out to buy foam cups and marshmallows and ingredients for hot chocolate and spiced cider. At 7:30, an angel choir would begin singing in the Union City Civic Auditorium - but I wasn't going to get to hear them. Sometime between 6:00 and 7:30, I would meet T---- and hand off the tickets.
My feet hurt, and my back hurt, and I was so tired that I was making all kinds of squirrelly mistakes at the register.
Yep, Saturday was NOT looking good.
Heading to the back of the store for a much-needed break, I spied my friend Melissa on the paper-goods aisle. I jogged over for a quick hug, then started crying. "I've got this, Camille. I'm on top of it..." Melissa wasn't shopping for herself. She was buying supplies for the party at my house. "Don't think another thought about it - get back to work." She hugged me again and shooed me away. What a tremendous burden she lifted off my weary shoulders! For now, I only had to worry about surviving my shift.
I finally trudged out to the car at 6:15 Saturday evening, unlocked the door and climbed into the driver's seat. Too tired and too numb to think clearly. I didn't want to go home...I didn't want to go to a concert...I didn't want to go anywhere. I just wanted to be still and quiet. So I sat there and cried. Yep, had a full-blown pity party.
Lord, I am crashing... How do you pray when your body and your soul and your heart are so very tired, so very at the bottom? I'm not inclined to ask for signs from God, but...Lord, I need some very direct communication from You right now...
Brrrrng! I blew my nose and dug in my purse for the cell phone. "Hello?"
"Mrs. Camille, this is T----. We're at your house right now at the Reformation Party. We're getting ready to head to Union City for the concert. Where should we meet you to get the tickets?"
I really needed to be getting home. At 7:10, I found my young friends on the steps to the auditorium. They had brought a few other folks from the party, too, including my daughter Martha. "Mom, just go to the concert." Martha is bossy like that sometimes. Emotionally, I was in something like a fetal position - I needed a little bossing around. "Mom, just stay with us."
So I did.
The theme for the concert was love. The first half of the program, classical choral music from Europe. Scripture set to music. God's love for His people. Christ's love for His bride, the church. At one point, the young girl sitting next to me leaned her head on my shoulder and whispered, "Mrs. Camille, if I woke up in heaven right now, and the angels began singing, I think this is how it would sound."
"Yes, I think you're right."
For two hours, God's messengers sang love songs straight to my heart. Thank you, Lord.
When I pulled into the driveway just before 11:00 Saturday night, only one car remained from all the guests who had been at my house that evening. Steve stood at the kitchen sink, washing the last of the dishes. Thomas ran out to the coals left from the bonfire and roasted a hot dog for my late supper. A hot dog, a glass of wine, and finally bed. Whatever good or bad, wrong or right, that had transpired during that long Saturday, it was over.
Sunday morning at Grace, the singing was awesome - and that's saying a lot, coming on the heels of a Chanticleer concert! The preaching - a passionate call to consider anew the glory and majesty and sovereignty of our great God. The Lord's Supper: "What food luxurious loads the board, when at His table sits the Lord! The wine how rich, the bread how sweet, when Jesus deigns the guests to meet!" (Charles Spurgeon, Amidst Us Our Beloved Stands)
When I am bottomed out, exhausted, at my lowest, that's when I need most desperately to remember and to contemplate earnestly the great truths that God is sovereign, God is good, and He loves me very much.
This weekend, I was too tired to think, to weak to remember...so God tenderly told me again Himself.
6 days ago