Friday, July 8, 2011

A Moment of Beauty

Pure serendipity, that's what her well-timed phone call happened to be.  It's a rare thing for the two of us to speak; rare in the sense of not often, but also precious ... like baby's breath.  

So for many long minutes we chatted of this and of that, mostly of family and all about the Lord's goodness.  Then about her incredible battle with cancer.  She called it a "gift", and again I was struck by how powerful such gifts can be as evidenced in this solitary life (and so many like it).

We pray them away, these battles.  We seek miracles to be rid of them.  We confess they are not of God, and certainly not for us.  We deem them to be the work of our arch enemy.  We rail against them; and sometimes we rail against God. 

But there it was, her confession that this hideous battle has been and has become a gift.  How does one account for that? 

This evening I read the following piece from my Streams in the Desert Devotional.  It frames perfectly what she described, and I will forever envision her now with wings.

You wear them elegantly, Elaine I saw you in them today, and your soaring is simply amazing.

“They shall mount up with wings as eagles” (Isa.40:31).

There is a fable about the way the birds got
their wings at the beginning.
They were first made without wings.
Then God made the wings and put them down
before the wingless birds and said to them,
“Come, take up these burdens and bear them.”

The birds had lovely plumage and sweet voices;
they could sing, and their feathers gleamed in the sunshine,
but they could not soar in the air.
They hesitated at first when bidden to take up
the burdens that lay at their feet, but soon they obeyed,
and taking up the wings in their beaks,
laid them on their shoulders to carry them.

For a little while the load seemed heavy and hard to bear,
but presently, as they went on carrying the burdens,
folding them over their hearts,
the wings grew fast to their little bodies,
 and soon they discovered how to use them,
and were lifted by them up into the air–
the weights became wings.

It is a parable. We are the wingless birds, and our duties
and tasks are the pinions God has made to lift us up
 and carry us heavenward.
We look at our burdens and heavy loads,
and shrink from them;
but as we lift them and bind them about our hearts,
they become wings,
and on them we rise and soar toward God.


Rebecca said...

Precious from first word to last, Kathleen.

May she (and we) continue to rise and soar toward God...

Sonja said...

oh I love this. I have watched Elaine and heard her heart as her journey has taken her to the place of new wings. I LOVE that girl!

The passage is wonderful, and for each of us. What a precious thought this morning, to know that our burdens are becoming wings from God. :)


Angie Knight said...

OH WOW. I believe..with all my heart...I was sent by HIM to this spot today to read THIS post.

Thank YOU sister/friend!

elaine @ peace for the journey said...

I read "Streams" as well; I also read Spurgeon and Chambers each day. I sometimes think to myself, with such worthiness already in print, why in the world are more words needed?! But then, I live them. I experience something--a dark valley, a joyous triumph--and I find myself in their thoughts with fresh visioning. And I write some more. Maybe never to be a classic like theirs, but write them because some experiences in our journeys cry out for words--for remembrance.

You bless me with yours this morning, Sassy. The ground beneath my feet and in my heart is still shaking for the beautiful revelation you shared with me yesterday. Kingdom work is, indeed, EVERYTHING! Keep praying those prayers. That availeth highly and muchly!

I love you, friend.


"Just Me - NC Beth" said...

Awesome post! Elaine is inspiring....but yet, so are you...both Sisters in Christ!



tiffany @ tea w tiffany said...

Angie, emailed me your link for this post. It's definitely speaking to me right where i am at. God is so good to confirm what He knows I need to hear. Thank you, thank you.

Janette@Janette's Sage said...

This sums up the song "Blessings" she addresses all of this and I have been soaking in the words. Yes, "what if the trials are your mercy in disguise" the song says.
I am learning...what a precious post.

beBOLDjen said...

Wow stunningly beautiful words you shared with us as we consider our burdens in a heavenly light.

What a beautiful friendship you and Elaine share (I read her words to you above - very sweet).

I took your advice and wrote her and told her I try always to do what you advise me to do, and that this time you suggested I seek her out at She Speaks. I know we'll be among a large throng of women (600, I think!) but I'm hoping to connect with her if possible.

Thanks for your encouragement over at my blog.

PS- I so enjoy reading snippets of your adventures with your grandkids on FB. Always makes me smile as I imagine you fishing, or making rice in the wee hours. SO FUN!

myletterstoemily said...

she is such an inspiration, and so are you!

Patrina's Pencil said...

God is looking for a breed of people that have this kind of weight carrying capacity. People who can carry the burden to full term will embark on a day when the burden translates to blessing - and a seasoned anointing falls like a mantel from heaven. It is in this reconciliation between burden and blessing - that the true treasures of darkness are realized.

The Lord has brought dear Faith Elaine to my window pane of late, as He downloaded this truth to me. Faith Elaine is a testament to this weight carrying capacity. I am encouraged by her 'gift'.

May His anointing go before her and settle on her shoulders as she carries this healing mantel. The Lord has given her His 'come back Key" - to unlock the hidden treasures of darkness.

I celebrate her "wings" - the reconciliation between burden and blessing. She wears them well!

Blessings to you, Kathleen. I was moved by your words at my place tonight. Thanks for that heart-felt confirmation.

patrina >")>><

RCUBEs said...

How encouraging also to us and many others going through tough battles! But isn't the life of a true Christian bears Jesus' Name, not in prosperity, but during times of facing adversity?

"Instead, be very glad—for these trials make you partners with Christ in his suffering, so that you will have the wonderful joy of seeing his glory when it is revealed to all the world." -1 Peter 4:13 (NLT)

God bless you both, two awesome sisters in Christ!

Just a little something from Judy said...

This is absolutely beautiful!!! Only heaven will reveal how women like Elaine, her life and her outlook,continue to bless, encourage, and uplift so many of us. I thanked God for her and for you and this piece you shared today. It touched my heart in a very special way.

Saleslady371 said...

What a great way to look at a heavy trial. Elaine is an inspiration to me and I pray for her daily.


Terri Tiffany said...

You got to talk with each other!! What a huge blessing that is in itself!!!