Only God could orchestrate such a thing. I wonder at what point in my life I’ll stop thinking something is too hard for him. I’m guessing that truly takes a lifetime.
I came back to a song, last night, that has been on my playlist for a couple of years. My sweet friends sent it to me last February when we were in our deepest darkest place. They said, “We will wait until you are ready to sing it again.” And so they did. I know now, it isn’t simply a song anymore. It is a declaration. It says all of it is in his hands. Because it is.
Worship is wound around our story so tight I can’t untangle it if I wanted to. I was standing in worship six months ago when Mike’s heart stopped. It all started with worship. I was in every way poured out. The moment I walked into the ICU I wasn’t singing at all. I stopped. But Jesus never did. He sang continually over my heart saying, “I am your shepherd, you have everything you need.” All I could do was rock back and forth to the song and whisper it over and over again. Jesus. Jesus. Jesus. My enough.
The first time I made it to church last March while Mike was recovering, I couldn’t sing a note. Not one came out. I just stood and let it wash over me. It took weeks before I could join the song quietly from my seat. Even longer for me to raise my hands and let it become part of me once again. Quietly, Jesus waited. Always singing.
All during this time, he has been unraveling my heart. Layer after layer of hurt and hope have been coming undone in pairs. He is so tender with us when we are healing—always the great physician of our deepest wounds. Slowly, he has added to my ongoing playlist, healing songs with lyrics I find myself humming in the kitchen and playing in my car. He has been telling me to take my time. He has waited, still.
So a couple of weeks ago I got a text from my worship pastor. It read, “Is your heart ready to sing?”
I hesitated, “Lord, am I?”
I knew the answer. I’ve known for a while that part of my breakthrough will always include worship. Not only in my kitchen but corporately. I wish I could explain it, but I can’t.
And so, yesterday, six months to the day, when our holy disruption began, I stood in worship team rehearsal, not just to sing but to come back to that SONG of healing. I looked around last night and realized it isn’t my song at all. I’m simply one of many who joins the chorus and sings it back to Jesus our hope, the singer who never stops.
This weekend, just before I sing, my pastor is going to preach on a story about a desperate woman who reached out in worship to be healed. This happens to also be the opening story in my new book Is Jesus Worth It? When I wrote it one year ago I had such a burning desire to place it there. I didn’t know why. This may not seem odd, but have I mentioned my new book is on the book of Hebrews? The story of a woman who is healed is found in the Gospels of Matthew and Mark—not Hebrews. Only God does that.
He writes the best stories.
He sings the true song.
I have been asking him lately if I am really ready. To sing, release a book, write another. And the answer I keep hearing in my heart is, “Do you trust me? Have I failed you yet?”
Yes, Lord. No not once.
“And the ransomed of the Lord shall return
and come to Zion with singing;
everlasting joy shall be upon their heads;
they shall obtain gladness and joy,
and sorrow and sighing shall flee away.” Isaiah 35:10
Oh sweet friends. Sometimes the bravest thing we can do is worship. We don’t have the answers. We don’t know what tomorrow will hold. But the ransomed of the Lord know who holds tomorrow and desperate we reach out for him.
And she shall sing there…and sorrow and sighing shall flee away.
P.S. So many of you have been kind to pray and ask about how Mike is doing.This type of recovery takes time, and doctors told us it is the hardest event to heal from. Gratefully he is back at work, driving, and doing what a dad of four girls does most of the time—listening to the constant chatter. We continue to be grateful for where we are, in light of where we could have been or even medically should have been. Our God is an awesome and generous God. He deserves the glory.
You can read chapter 1 of my new book for free here. Official release date is September 1, but I’ve seen it out and about already. If you are in a trial, coming out of one, or one might be brewing on the horizon this book is for you.