About ten years ago I was out running in a snowstorm. In a very unusual move for me, I had ear buds in and was listening to a variety of music. I have probably run with ear buds three or four times in my life, as I tend to lose myself in the music and not pay attention to my surroundings. Anyway, on this run I was praying, as I often do. I was asking God if Ravi would ever speak. Suddenly, the music on my iPod shifted to the song “Mary did you know?” Here are the lyrics which stood out to me:
“Mary did you know that your baby boy will give sight to a blind man? Mary did you know that your baby boy will calm a storm with his hand? Did you know that your baby boy has walked where angels trod? When you kiss you little baby, you kiss the face of God.”
“The blind will see, the deaf will hear, the dead will live again. The lame will leap, the dumb will speak, the praises of the Lamb.”
These lyrics stopped me in my tracks. “God”, I asked, “Is this for real?” The song ended but instead of going on to another song, it repeated, and those lyrics stood out to me again. I was deeply moved. I have carried this memory in my heart for over ten years.
Yesterday Boo Bear and I were hanging out in his room. I was sorting laundry and he was playing on his iPad. He uses his iPad to tell me where he wants to go, what he wants to do, who he wants to see, but it is usually a very one way conversation. Yesterday was different.
Boo Bear: “I want to go to a restaurant.”
Harriet: “We went to Dairy Queen today.”
Boo Bear: “Misty Slush.”
Harriet: “That is correct. You had a Misty Slush.”
Boo Bear:” Culvers.”
Harriet: “Well, we are having chili for dinner tonight but I bet Peter will take you to Culvers tomorrow. What would you like to order?”
Boo Bear: “Hamburger with cheese.”
Harriet : “Okay. We will tell Peter that is what you want. How many hamburgers do you want to order.”
Boo Bear: “One.”
This is the first actual back and forth conversation I have ever had with my son. Usually he just tells me what he wants, or leads me to the desired object and that is that. This time, he chose to engage with me and have an actual conversation. The lyrics from the song came back to me. “The blind will see, the deaf will hear, the dead will live again. The lame will leap, the dumb will speak, the praises of the Lamb.”
I have known for a long time never to underestimate my son. He will always surprise me. I also know that God’s love for Ravi is steadfast and unending. Miracles do not happen overnight. Prayers are not always answered by return mail. Sometimes the answer to a prayer can take a decade or more.
Right now, in a world consumed by fire, disease and sadness, I cling to such moments of light. On this morning of 9/11, nineteen years later, I am still overwhelmed with grief. But, I also believe that God works and moves among us. There are pockets of light that shine in when we look for them, or sometimes even when we are not looking. I see the grace of God through my children. Where do you see God in your life today?