Life Happens

“Bow the knee;
trust the heart of your Father when the answer goes beyond what you can see.
Bow the knee;
lift your eyes toward heaven and believe the One who holds eternity.
And when you don’t understand
the purpose of His plan,
In the presence of the King,
bow the knee.”

You know how it is when you get a song stuck in your head? A constant refrain in perpetual repeat mode playing on the I-Pod of your brain? It’s sometimes VERY annoying, like when it’s the theme from “Gilligan’s Island” or “The Brady Bunch”. But this week, for me, it’s been Chris Machen and Mike Harland’s creation, quoted above.

Early on I attributed it to the fact that we sang it in worship service last Sunday and to the reality that it is, quite simply, a beautiful song with a powerful message. As the week progressed, and it stayed and Stayed and STAYED, repeating over and over as I worked, cooked, showered, did laundry, and tried to read, I felt I needed to consider its presence a little more deeply.

For most of the past year, the answer for me has gone beyond what I can see. And, for much of my life, I have not understood the purpose of His plan. But, I know He’s got one–a special and good one for each of us–writers, nurses, wives, mothers, daughters, grandmothers, sisters, friends (and the male counterparts of each of those terms–don’t mean to leave you out, guys). And, Monday morning quarterbacking, I have been able to detect His hand at work in the events of my life. We want to see the future. We want to know everything’s going to turn out just fine. But the seeing and the knowing is not for us to do. It is, after all, His plan. Our role is to believe, lift our eyes toward heaven, bow the knee, and live the plan. I think those lyrics, so beautifully captured in the melody of the song, reminded me of that, and I needed that reminder.

This is not a discourse on how bad my life is, because it isn’t. As a very good friend often reminds, “Life happens’. A middle-aged, apparently strong and healthy family member is stricken unexpectedly by respiratory failure. Another family member struggles with a seemingly unending bout of depression, which I am helpless to “fix”. There are hurdles to overcome and valleys to traverse, as I wait for the verdict from a literary agent who is considering my first novel. But the reality that I am SO blessed with steady and gratifying work, loving family and friends, a comfortable home, and a faith that never lets me down far outweighs the fleeting struggles of this life.

I think I needed that song last week, and I most likely will in weeks to come. To be honest, my knees are pretty arthritic. The bowing’s not too hard, but the getting up is. However, I surely can bow the head, heart, and spirit, and “Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for Him;” (Psalm 37:7a, NIV).

Blessings to all of you this week!