"Exactly what I wanted"

“He says, “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.”  The Lord Almighty is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress.” Psalm 46:10-11

My grandson Miles’ birthday party was this past weekend and he and a horde of his friends and some of their parents were outside while a few of us remained indoors watching 3 babies lying on the living room floor giving their impression of a trio of cute slugs.  Miles opened his gifts outdoors and came running in and joyfully exclaimed “Vicki, thank you, this is exactly what I wanted” holding up a package labeled ‘Batman Heat’; one very happy six year old.  The ‘gong of memory’ began to clang in my head after hearing his words and while I was truly happy for his joy, my thoughts went back in time when I was his age…and what I had really wanted after just turning seven.  The attached photo is the last recorded image of my dad as he was coming home from work and passing through the yard gate a few weeks before Christmas; he died in that car on December 17.  When I was seven, he was ‘exactly what I wanted’ on this side of Heaven and nothing that came wrapped in paper really mattered.  I wanted to see him come through that gate again, just one more time; that’s what I wanted.  And today, there are still things in this world that put a smile on my face and warm my heart but I long to see Jesus face to face; that is ‘exactly what I want’ to see…in His time…and not mine.  I am closing today with the words from the hymn ‘Be still, my Soul’ that were written by Catharina von Schlegel in 1752.

“Be still, my soul; the Lord is on thy side; bear patiently the cross of grief or pain; leave to thy God to order and provide; in every change He faithful will remain.  Be still, my soul; thy best, thy heavenly, Friend through thorny ways leads to a joyful end.  Be still, my soul; thy God doth undertake to guide the future as He has the past.  Thy hope, thy confidence, let nothing shake; all now mysterious shall be bright at last.  Be still, my soul; the waves and winds still know His voice who ruled them while He dwelt below.  Be still, my soul, though dearest friends depart and all is darkened in the vale of tears; then shalt thou better know His love, His heart, Who comes to soothe thy sorrows and thy fears.  Be still, my soul; thy Jesus can repay from His own fullness all He takes away.  Be still, my soul; the hour is hastening on when we shall be forever with the Lord, when disappointment, grief, and fear are gone, sorrow forgot, love's purest joys restored.  Be still, my soul; when change and tears are past, all safe and blessed we shall meet at last.”

Dear Heavenly Father, you have called your servants to ventures of which we cannot see the ending, by paths as yet untrodden, through perils unknown.  Give us faith to go out with good courage, not knowing where we go but only that your hand is leading us and your love supporting us through Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior.  Amen.

May God be with you…Jay