Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Watchbands, Worries, and Worship at the Throne

In my purse I am still carrying around a watch band that my dad gave me a few months ago, before he became too ill to do such things,  to give to Bill.  It was made out of leather, and Dad always hated leather bands.  He was a thick, meaty Sicilian who preferred the stretch metal link bands, so the practical thing to do was to pass it on. 

It has been three weeks now since Dad went home to be with the Lord, and I don't really want to put it away, because it reminds me that Dad was "just here."  Just here meant a few days ago for a while, now it means a few weeks ago, and later it will mean something else.  The impression that I get when I go home to Mom and Dad's house is so strong it is painful.  His shoes are still at the door.  The winter coat that I carried home from hospice without him in it--I hung it in the closet as though he would need it in just a few days.

Now all this sounds very sad, and I hope I haven't lost you yet.  Because there is another side of this coin!  I also find myself thinking about all the things he was concerned about in the last months.  The mortgage?  Still an issue, but he probably forgot about it by now, as he is worshipping the Lord!  My son Will, who reminded Dad so much of himself that he was always giving me advice about how to handle him?  In the Lord's hands, just like before.  Leaky kitchen sink?  We are all here left to deal with it, but he has long forgotten it.  I could go on--so many projects he had set aside, plans to fix the house, the garage to clean.  None of it matters at all now.

Jesus told us not to worry about anything--and especially not to worry about anything that is not today.  Don't have a lot of money or a fancy position?  The Word says that a man's life does not consist in what he has and does.  The project in the garage?  You will get to it.  Or you won't. ( Either way, you win!)

I am not suggesting that we stop doing purposeful things in life, but I AM  thinking that we all need to stop worrying about them.  I think of all the ridiculous worries that flow through my head in the course of the day, and the countless little misunderstandings or imperfect exchanges I have with people that rob me of peace, when there is very little really that we must concern ourselves with.

Think about heaven and what goes on there.  After all, that is what all of us who believe in Jesus and call on His name are longing for.  I think from Dad's perspective right now, he sees how important relationships with the primary people in his life mattered.  I think he probably wishes he and Mom had snuggled more and struggled less (even though they clearly loved one another!).  I think now that he sees the Lord in all His glory, he can understand why he should let God be in control of his grandchildrens' destinies.  The garage has gloriously disappeared from his remembrance-- (even though it is very real to my Mom, my sisters, and myself still!).  All these things are in the Lord's capable hands, and we can add NOTHING--not even a minute to our own lives--by worrying about it. (Jesus said that!)

I am keeping the leather band in my purse a little while longer.  I am not in a hurry to ditch it, and I REALLY don't want to be the one to take Dad's coat out of the hall closet.  But I am not sad for him.  I do wish I hadn't held on to irritations between us.  I wish I had been more unabashed with my affection for him, as his hugs and sweet touches on the cheek (always given so freely) are now gone from me for the rest of my journey here.  I want to trust God more with my life, and I want to enact a One Day At a Time policy on concerns.  One day will be my last day.  The gas bill won't get paid that month.  My closet probably won't be orderly, if my pattern so far is any indication.  And the Lord will still be on the throne... and I will get to see Him face to face.


Katie said...

Thanks for this post. I just spent half the night worrying about something that had no eternal value. And now I'm tired and it's been resolved. There's so much effort in worrying, it's exhausting but what a great perspective this gives me. Hope you and Bill are doing well--I think about you two often.

Janice Y. said...


I'm so glad you got to be with him until his transition.