Monday, April 14, 2008

Heart Ache

Not that I consider my life very dramatic, but last week did have its fill of heart-stopping and heart-wrenching moments:
  • An IRS audit for my mother's 2006 taxes saying I owed over $25,000 was sent to me. Whoa! Fortunately, a CPA check over the records revealed they had only counted the gains but not the losses on her investments. Never had I felt so relieved in writing a tax check for "only" $500 after the corrections were made and then hearing the CPA tell me the 2007 return was fine.
  • I have stood by the bedside several times of Bill Scott, a member of our church and the first fruits of our Rescue Mission ministry, as his health had diminished to the point he was placed on a ventilator last Wednesday. As he had requested not to be placed longterm on life support, the doctors weaned him from the ventilator this weekend and we prepared for the worse. Yet for the second time in a month the Lord has revived him from the brink of death. He even said last night that "the Lord has resurrected me from the dead." A visit today found him once again joking wryly with the nurses.
  • Two former members of the church, both who have been excommunicated previously, are interacting with me and asking about restoration. As they have brought great pain to us, have experienced severe personal providences since leaving the church, and struggle with shame and confusion, I find communicating with them heart-wrenching. I hope for their restoration yet wonder about their sincerity.
So I would be the first to admit this shepherd was feeling a little emotionally drained already. Then came the appointment my heart was truly dreading. I had to meet with Lindsay.

For the past two months our oldest daughter, a freshman at a local university, has been auditioning at four music schools. Last Thursday was decision day, so she, Miriam and I met in my office for the final discussion and prayer. Through His kind providences, the Lord had made it clear to all of us that Geneva College was where He was leading her. She shared the message from a preacher friend and the Scriptures God had used to confirm this direction (most notably Mark 10:29-30) to her mother and me. We granted her permission and affirmed the same sense we had of the Lord's leading. The crying and praying came all at the same time. The thought of not having Lindsay around each day, her sweet spirit and beautiful music missing from our home, is almost too much for her mom and dad to bear.

Yes, we know our children are being raised in order to be sent (Psalm 127). We rejoice in belonging to a church that has such a fine institution as Geneva with faithful congregations in the area who will care for her. We have confidence in God's leading and our daughter. We understand there are much greater pains others endure. I am happy and excited for you, Linds.

Yet that still does not take away this ache in my heart.

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The above painting was posted by permission of the artist, Natalie Thoman. You can view and even place an order for her work here.

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

This made me cry...there is an ache in my heart too! I love you. And I will miss you....so much.

Linds

Anonymous said...

I'm glad at least Lindsay is confident in her choice of school even if it is sad that she's moving away. I remember when my sister moved away for college...

Thanks Mr. York for your encouragement today! I really appreciate you sharing your wisdom and your prayers :)

Leah

Charity said...

I am so excited for Lindsay, but I feel her pain! I have already had a few prayerful and tearful meetings with my parents about my college decision, and there will have to be a final one very soon. But praise the Lord for His care and direction!

Natalie Thoman said...

Pastor Barry, I too cried when I read your post, I didn't realize that Lindsay had decided yet. I feel like a little sister of mine is moving away. I will miss her ever-steady sweet spirit around us!! It has been fun to watch her growing up so strong in her Christian walk.