Monday, January 21, 2013

When Going Means Walking in The Rain

I'd like to introduce you to my friend Tricia. Some of you may know her as FringeGirl. We're both old, blue-haired ladies in this blogging world. I feel like I've "known" her forever. Her heart is fixed on God, she oozes encouragement, and the girl is stinking funny. I read this post covered head to toe in goosebumps and knew all over again that I'm in "this", whatever it is, with her.

She gets it. She gets me, to my core. I'm so honored that she has chosen to share this soul-beauty here with us.

When Going Means Walking in The Rain - by Tricia Gillespie

Noah's Ark - this is what I see every night before I go to bed and every morning when I wake up.  This amateur painting on an old cabinet door reminds me of times it rained so hard, I never thought it would stop.  I felt like I was drowning, not just me, but my little family too.  Some days it took all we had just to keep our heads above water. I think that's why he painted it for me, to remind me of the rain and the rainbow that follows - the promise of the rainbow.

Sometimes "Going" means walking in the rain and pleading with people to get on the ark.  For the love of God and all things sane, just please get on the ark already.

Bo painted me this ark.  Just two little letters in a name for a man with such a big heart, and an even bigger drug problem.

He was the elusive guy who we constantly worked to track down.  Word in the neighborhood was we needed to talk to him, get him.  He was losing his battle with drugs, not just him, but also his wife.  And you see, they had these two kids.  The kids who had to fend for themselves for days at a time while their father was off on a crack high and their mother locked herself in the bedroom with her pills.  For days.

They were the ones God put on our hearts.  Go to them.  Find them.

When we did find them, our world was turned upside down.

Middle of the night phone calls and piling the babies in the truck, so we can go hunt him down.  "Where are we going?"  My three-old baby girl would ask.

"Going to find Bo."

"He's lost?"  She always wanted to know.

"Yes, in a way, he is lost and he needs some help finding his way back home."

And I would sit in the truck with the phone while my husband pounded down the door of a crack house, only to find he'd moved on already - moved on to the emergency room, our next stop.  Then on to jail.

Over and over again.  Walking in the rain.  Bringing the kids food in the rain.  Talking and talking in endless circles until we felt like we were being pulled into a whirlpool.

And then one day, so many days later, more than forty days and forty nights, something happened.  That larger than life man with the little name and insurmountable problems fell on his face before Jesus and cried out for forgiveness.  First him and then his wife.

The rain didn't stop though.  There is a high price to pay for sin, and we sat as they hauled off his kids.  Maybe it was for the best, we hoped.  We prayed for the best.

And we kept pleading with them to get on the ark, two by two.

I wish this little family had a happy ending, but sometimes the joy is in the little things - the tears, the brokenness, the reminder of a rainbow.  Maybe the going is more for us than them.  Maybe it is to remind us that there's a flood coming and an ark built, and it's our job to shout "Get on the ark!".

My little girl still has the wild stuffed cat Bo gave her.  She still asks about him, wonders if he ever found his way back home.  She reminds us how nice he was, and she walks into my bedroom and looks at the ark.

There's a rainbow waiting, but first we must walk in the rain.

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