Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Day 13: Joy Comes in the Morning

     About thirty years ago, I heard a wonderful speaker share her moving testimony about how the Lord had taken her through some extremely difficult trials in her life.  During the course of her testimony, she related an account of something that had happened in her Bronx neighborhood.  The story touched me and I would like to share it with you.
     An unfortunate young woman found herself pregnant.  She was hardly more than a child herself.  She was unmarried and frightened.  She couldn’t care for a baby.  She could scarcely care for herself.  She gave birth alone, in a wooded park late at night.  She tenderly wrapped her daughter in a tattered bath towel, pinned a quick note on it and pushed her baby deep under a large bush.  The night air felt warm.  The young mother left and never was seen again.
     The night became darker and colder.  The air temperature dropped.  The newborn awoke.  She began to cry and to wave her small fists.  The branches of the bush scratched her tiny arms, sparking even more wailing.  She kicked the towel off of her legs.  Her legs, too, were scratched by those sharp branches.  She was cold, wet, hungry, and abandoned.  The night air and the damp ground seeped the warmth out of her small body.  Her cries became weaker and weaker.
     Dawn broke on the new day.  A man was walking his dog.  The dog, as dogs do, was investigating every bush in the park.  In fact, the dog was trying to push into one particular bush.  That was when the man heard the sound of a tiny kitten mewing.  He was shocked when bending over to rescue a kitten, he discovered, instead, a baby.  The man tucked the infant inside his jacket to warm her and hurriedly called the police.
     The baby was whisked to a nearby hospital.  At the hospital she was treated for dehydration and exposure.  She had many scratches and a few deep cuts from the branches.  These, too, were tended.
     The story was on the news and in the papers.  When the doctors were asked how such a tiny newborn could survive the cold night air without any real protection, the doctors stated that it was a miracle, but also it was because of the branches.  The branches scratched and poked the infant’s tender skin, causing her to cry.  The crying and movement helped to raise her body temperature.  Had she been comfortable and sleeping, she would have died.
     Jesus says in John 14:18, “I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you.”  And He does.
     Some of us think that, if we believe life will always be sunshine and roses.  But life is not like that.  There are times in our lives when we are poked and scratched.  There are times when we are persecuted.  We suffer loss.  We watch our child struggle with pain and illness.  We get sick ourselves.  We want to say, “Enough!  God, I just can’t handle anymore.  Aren’t you picking on me a little much this week?  How much can I handle?  How much do I have to handle?  This hurts.”
     But during that time God is still holding us securely in the palm of His hand.
In the day of trouble he will keep me safe in his dwelling;
He will hide me in the shelter of his tabernacle and set me high upon a rock.
Hear my voice when I call, O Lord;  be merciful to me and answer me.
My heart says of you, “Seek his face!”  Your face, Lord, I will seek.
Though my father and mother forsake me,  the Lord will receive me.
I am still confident of this:  I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.
Wait for the Lord.    ~Psalm 27:5-14
    This post is Day 13 in the 31 Day Series: Welcome to My Mess.  You can read the other posts here.
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