I watched the ebb and flow of the ocean. Another wave came crashing in. As it receded, gone were the footprints a life had just made. Heartlessly swept away as if it never existed. But in the grandeur scheme of life, it was awesomely beautiful. Part of the Creator’s bigger plan.
I see the rhythmic patterns of life. The sun rises brightly with hope and then quietly disappears. Another day is gone. Never to be experienced again. The ebb and flow of life.
I sit at the bedside of the sweet woman who’s been my best friend for over twenty-six years. Her chest rises rhythmically with every breath. But each breath is dependent on the ventilator that is keeping her alive. The ebb and flow of life.
I’ve cried many tears this week. As I hold her hand and thank her for being like a sister to me for over twenty-six years, my heart bleeds. But God has also given me a precious gift. I asked her to squeeze my hand twice if she could hear me. And she did! And I was able to once again tell her how much I love her and treasure our friendship. Yet, the fight for her life continues.
The last time we were together, we again talked about how we couldn’t imagine doing life without each other. I was maid of honor in her wedding and she was in mine. During each ebb and flow experience in my life, Marilyn has been a constant. During this painful time, God has been showing me what to do when my heart breaks…
Just earlier, my husband and I cried and prayed with the parents of a courageous young man in another hospital. They are also experiencing the emotional roller coaster of life. The ebb and flow of joy and sorrow. My mama heart wanted to hug this valiant young man. His brain cancer has come back, and the uncertainty of his treatment and future breaks them. My heart breaks as I, all too well, feel the pain he and his family are facing. I wipe my tears now even as I write. This ebb and flow. Life can be intensely painful, yet amazingly beautiful.
Life is created of ebb and flow. And in a single moment of time, the direction can change. The miracle we’ve been praying for happens. Our hearts soar with the beauty of sweet relationships. And we rejoice in our “God moments.” But in a single moment of time, our hearts can lay crushed and bleeding. Because of that diagnosis, accident, decision, or circumstance.
Then where is the hope? How can you find beauty in the midst of the crashing, hope dashing aches of life? What do you cling to when your heart achingly throbs with each beat?
Each pounding wave is part of the ocean’s grandeur beauty and purpose, so is each crashing event in our life. As the wave of the ocean is not a meaningless event, so is each circumstance we face. The Creator and Sustainer of the ocean is sovereign over us. He’s still in control of the waves.
When your heart breaks, hang on to the eternal. Don’t focus on the waves, but on the ocean. We were created for something much bigger and grander than mortal life. Our life here is a shattered reflection of what we are created for. The footprints we leave determine our destiny, yet they are mere prints on the Master’s plan.
Our daughter so wisely has said, “Our life on earth is not about our life on earth.” And her statement says it so well. Our lives are simply a preparation for eternity. Yes, our hearts intensely grieve because of our losses. And God weeps and grieves with us. He knows we are still in the “womb” and won’t experience the life we were created for until we encounter the reality of heaven.
When you experience the ebb and flow of life and your heart breaks, live for eternity. My life with my precious son was also cut short, but I look forward to eternity with him. I choose to focus on the ocean. And praise the One Who holds the ocean in His hand. Just as the rise and fall of each music note produces a beautiful melodious song, so are the days of our lives. By claiming grace for each moment, you can still experience indescribable peace in the midst of the the ebb and flow of life. Don’t focus on the waves, but on the ocean.
~Cindy (For The Mullett Family)