My Daddy's Arms

>> Sunday, March 16, 2008

The sun peeked in through the drawn curtains, waking me from a restless slumber. I roused myself off the couch, where I had finally dropped off to sleep. Five hours is not much to rejuvenate this tired body. I whispered a prayer, “Another day You have made – Lord, will you please help me rejoice in it?”

I did my everyday morning activities. Meanwhile, the critter, the varmint that grabs hold of me every single day, latched on, attaching itself to my head and squeezed with all its might, with its two paws. I said, “You’re not welcome here today, Old Pain.”

The life-sucking varmint cried out, “I deeeelight in causing you pain, my Pprreeettttyyyyy. Just try to do your tasks today. I will torment and cajole you until you run back home, screaming for me to let go.”

“Not today,” I cried, “Be gone, in Jesus’ Name.”

“Boogertiboo – I have my talons in YOU!”

I gave in, head down, having lost the fight once again. I spilled out my morning medicines into my hand and swallowed the colorful variety in one gulp. I trudged out the door, splashing through the squishy wet yard and climbed into my van to drive to work.

I turned the key and music automatically filled the space. Lifting one hand to Heaven, I belted out songs of praise, certainly making a joyful noise. For a time, the varmint fled, knowing that the van ride to school was not the place for it.

But occasionally it would return, in spite of the music. Offering me an out, it would whisper in my ear, “You could end the pain now. It would appear as an accident.”The blatant wickedness from this ugly varmint caused me to tremble. I shook my head to break up the thoughts that sought to ravage my mind. I continued on with my drive, calling out to my God to keep me safe, and to keep others on the road safe from me.

Making it to work, I walked down the corridors, teens coming at me on all sides. Lightheaded, I grabbed for the wall. The critter, the pesky varmint had found me once again. It affixed itself onto my head, poking its grimy fingers into my ears. It made them ring. I wanted to fall to the ground to stop the world from moving at such a dizzying pace, but I didn’t. I continued on. I trudged, barely picking my feet up off the floor. I got to my destination, God led me there.

I did my work, but had to force myself to do these things I love. I smiled; I said I’m fine. Meanwhile, the varmint stepped up the attack. It worked its way into my body and caused my heart to race and my blood pressure to skyrocket. My face grew red and hot to the touch.

I let it win every time. For some reason, God was allowing this creature the freedom to harass me. Or was I allowing it? I finally gave up, but I couldn’t run fast enough or far enough. It clung to me – screeching in my ear – delighting in my pain, delighting in my discomfort, delighting in my desperation.

“God help me!” I got home and crawled into bed, tucking my blanket to my neck. Tears formed in my eyes and spilled down my cheeks. “I can’t do this anymore. I’ve tried to be faithful, tried to learn what You’ve been teaching me. Can it be over yet, Lord, please?”

A soft IM chime came from my laptop. It was my friend Shirley.

“Braeden asked me who I was writing to. I told him it was my friend Laury, and that you get bad headaches. He said, ‘Mommy, can I pray for her?’ Laury, he’s standing here praying for you right now.”

The varmint cringed in fright as a seven-year-old stormed the Gates of Hell. It howled and stomped its feet. It turned purple and steam flowed out its ears. The varmint then threw itself on the floor: shaking, writhing, and twisting itself into strange contortions. I smiled while watching this creature in pain for once. I whispered, “Jesus. And then I said it louder, Jesus!”

Heaviness was lifted off me. I laughed aloud as I watched the varmint let out an ear-piercing scream and fly out the window.

“Shirley, tell my small prayer warrior ‘thank you.’ I’m going to sleep. I know I’ll be able to rest easy in my Daddy’s arms now.”

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