I recently came across a challenge for photographers to submit one image that tells their story. Only one image, any story. I began to think about that, and couldn’t help wondering as a Christian, what verse would tell my story? Any verse, any story.
My mind took me to another hospital bed, only a year and a half ago. My baby still safely buried deep inside my womb. This bed is where my sweetheart lay. The man who won my heart when he was only a boy. The man I have loved everyday since we were teenagers. The man who entered a holy covenant with me, til death do us part. I found myself begging God that it would not be this night. A silly broken ankle from a basketball game landed us here. He needed surgery, and somehow in between the surgery and now, he got a staph infection and turned septic. Poison was raging in his blood, reaching his very bone structure, and he was fighting to survive. On this night, terror was real. The fear in the room was so palpable, it would have choked anyone who entered. I was the only occupant that was conscious, and it was certainly choking me.
As I held his hand, and gazed upon him, the strong fingers of fear, gripped my neck like a vice, calling the unthinkable to mind. Will this be goodbye? How can I go on? As I watched the vital signs drop, the grip grew stronger. What will become of us? I thought of THEM. Three sets of eyes waiting for me at home, and one set still inside of me, yet unseen. This moment will define me, as their mother. Words, long since hidden deep in the recesses of my heart, flooded my mind, prying the choking fingers loose. “When you pass through the waters, I will be with you.” “Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for Thou art with me.” “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” “Come unto Me, all ye who are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” and perhaps the greatest for the moment – “There is no fear in love, but perfect love casteth out fear; because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love.”
Oh, how I knew of the torment. The demons in that room that night were alive and well. For the first time, I can ever remember, I could sense a spiritual realm battling that night. There is no fear in love. And this was my defining moment. In the dark room that smelled of antiseptic, this was where my worlds would collide. I choose love. I do not know how to be perfect in anything. Heck, I can’t even fold that stupid fitted sheet perfectly even after years of trying. Fear has been my vice for so long. But on this night, that I did not know what the outcome would be, little eyes needed a mom that was not fearful. And I needed a Father to transform me. HIS love is the only love that is truly perfect. HE is the One Who casts out fear. I finally understood the verse. He has no fear, nor would He desire for it to torment us, He is offering me to be made over into His perfect love.
That night, was not a night of praying with words. That night was a night of the Spirit interceding for us with groanings that cannot be uttered. It was a night of Him whispering His words over my terror. It was a night of Him teaching me, leading me, and pouring Himself over me. Showing me a piece of His offering, to be made perfect in love.
Dawn came and with it came healing. Healing for this heart that had been too long in bondage to fear, and healing for that sweetheart of mine still holding my hand. It’s been a long process for both of us, but praise God, we will never be the same.