Wednesday, January 07, 2015

Whispered assurances

This will be a long night, I fear. One of my dogs had surgery on a paw today, for an injury received over the summer that simply would not heal. Groggy, disoriented, probably in pain despite the medicine he's taking, he lies at my feet, whimpering, unsure if it is safe to fall asleep. I won't sleep in my bed tonight, up the stairs which he is not supposed to climb. Instead I'll sleep, one can hope, in a chair with an ottoman near where he lies on a dog bed, while his adopted sister stretches out on the sofa. And whenever he awakes, whenever he whimpers, whenever he groggily wonders what is happening, I'll be right there to quietly reassure him, "It's okay. You're okay. I'm right here." The whimpers subside.

My voice echoes back onto my ears like a whispered promise from God.

"It's okay. You're okay. I'm right here."

There are seemingly a thousand reasons to worry and fret and, it feels, whimper. Vets are not cheap, for one. A car that is becoming a little too friendly with mechanics. Electricity that flickers and then disappears on a night when this normally balmy state will plunge into the teens. A job in another state and a house that refuses to sell itself.

"It's okay. You're okay. I'm right here."

And He is, of course. Jehovah Jireh, my provider. Jehovah-shammah, the God who is there. Jesus, my God incarnate. Whispering consolation and peace.

My thoughts turn away from my own troubles, which seem real enough, and settle on the more dire, the more desperate, needs of those around me. The mother comforting small children, missing and fearing for a husband and father in a hospital far away. The parents clinging to each other and celebrating the small victory of a hungry child in between chemo sessions. The daughter caring for a mother taken suddenly ill with uncertain prospects for physical or mental recovery.

I pray that each of them hears the same whispered comfort from the Father we share.

"It's okay. You're okay. I'm right here."