Wednesday March 3, 2010

“With Feathers”

“Hope” is the thing with feathers —
That perches in the soul —
And sings the tune without the words —
And never stops — at all —

And sweetest — in the Gale — is heard —
And sore must be the storm —
That could abash the little Bird
That kept so many warm —

I’ve heard it in the chillest land —
And on the strangest Sea —
Yet, never, in Extremity,
It asked a crumb — of Me.

~Emily Dickinson~

Today I cry with Job, “Oh that I might have my request, and that God would fulfill my hope” (Job 6:8), for I am clinging to a hope which is not seen; “hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees?” (Romans 8:24). But the Lord is my hope, and He is my strength & salvation. No matter what He does to me (and for me), His praise will remain in my mouth and hidden in my heart. With Job, may I proclaim with believing faith: “Though He slay me, I will hope in Him; yet I will argue my ways to His face” (Job 13:15).

“To Hope”

When by my solitary hearth I sit,
When no fair dreams before my – mind’s eye – flit,
And the bare heath of life presents no bloom;
Sweet Hope, ethereal balm upon me shed,
And wave thy silver pinions o’er my head.

Whene’er I wander, at the fall of night,
Where woven boughs shut out the moon’s bright ray,
Should sad Despondency my musings fright,
And frown, to drive fair Cheerfulness away,
Peep with the moon-beams through the leafy roof,
And keep that fiend Despondence far aloof.

Should Disappointment, parent of Despair,
Strive for her son to seize my careless heart;
When, like a cloud, he sits upon the air,
Preparing on his spell-bound prey to dart:
Chase him away, sweet Hope, with visage bright,
And fright him as the morning frightens night!

Whene’er the fate of those I hold most dear
Tells to my fearful breast a tale of sorrow,
O bright-eyed Hope, my morbid fancy cheer;
Let me awhile thy sweetest comforts borrow:
Thy heaven-born radiance around me shed,
And wave thy silver pinions o’er my head!

Should e’er unhappy love my bosom pain,
From cruel parents, or relentless fair;
O let me think it is not quite in vain
To sigh out sonnets to the midnight air!
Sweet Hope, ethereal balm upon me shed,
And wave thy silver pinions o’er my head!

In the long vista of the years to roll,
Let me not see our country’s honour fade:
O let me see our land retain her soul,
Her pride, her freedom; and not freedom’s shade.
From thy bright eyes unusual brightness shed –
Beneath thy pinions canopy my head!

Let me not see the patriot’s high bequest,
Great Liberty! how great in plain attire!
With the base purple of a court oppress’d,
Bowing her head, and ready to expire:
But let me see thee stoop from heaven on wings
That fill the skies with silver glitterings!

And as, in sparkling majesty, a star
Gilds the bright summit of some gloomy cloud;
Brightening the half veil’d face of heaven afar:
So, when dark thoughts my boding spirit shroud,
Sweet Hope, celestial influence round me shed,
Waving thy silver pinions o’er my head.

~John Keats, 1815~

Steven and I are seeking to “…rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us” (Romans 5:3-5). I am thankful, looking at this passage right now, for the confident knowledge I have that God’s love has been poured into my heart by the Holy Spirit — hope does not put me to shame! So often, I feel ashamed and humiliated by my physical/emotional difficulties borne from the burden of losing my babies — but I have hope in the Lord & [although somewhat flickering] hope for the future. And I will not be put to shame. Amen & hallelujah!

May we not grow weary in our prayers or in our efforts. May we have the faith of Abraham, of whom Paul said, “in hope he believed against hope” (Romans 4:18). May we, as Abraham, not lose our hope or weaken our faith when we consider our bodies (Romans 4:19) and the trials we face. Of course we have not been personally promised that our offspring would be as the stars in the sky — yet we feel called to produce children for the Kingdom, be it in Heaven or on the earth, and we can only move forward according to the call of God and the wisdom He gives us at any given time. Therefore, may we bold in seeking the face of our Father, bold in pursuing what means we must for physical fruitfulness, and bold in clinging to hope for more children in the Kingdom on earth. May we have no distrust to cause us to waver concerning God’s covenantal promises to us, and may we grow strong in faith as we give glory to God!! (Romans 4:20) May our faith be a witness to the world of God’s covenant-keeping love (His hesed), and to His power in our weakness. May it be accounted to us as righteousness (Romans 4:22-25).

“Safe In The Father’s Arms”

Far away from fear and death
Do my children play;
Never to know the sting of sin
On their spotless soul;
Never to know a single tear
Nor stab of searing pain.

In the Father’s arms are they,
His face do they behold.
In arms of tender comfort
They rest in loving cheer;
Salty taste of tears
Never to crease their face;
Not burnt by scorching sun
Nor chilled by thunderous storms.
Untouched by earthly shadows
And haunting pangs of night,
They giggle in golden warmth
And snuggle in contented glee.

Lifted higher than dreams can go,
They soar above
The failings of earth
And thrive in the love
Of the Father
Whose tender grace sparkles
And wondrous ways smile
With endless delight.

Yet my arms feel empty.
With painful chest
I long to hold them
To my breast;
To see their smiling faces
And ease my painful fears.
Yet this I know:
They are safe
In the Master’s care.
And I shall see them face to face
And hold them when I’m there.

They’ve breezed their way to Paradise.
How smooth their getting there;
So free from blame and shame.
More pain than them I’ve known,
Yet our destiny’s the same.
Their journey there was easy;
Long and hard is mine.
But whether quick or long,
We will meet again.

Till then, my loves, rest easy.
Behold his face and rejoice
Without a single fear.
I shall come to you some day
And you shall dry my tears,
As I weep in joy
To see your cheery face.
And even now at times
I think I hear your giggles,
But rest, my loves, in his arms,
Till I am with you there.


Romans 15:13
May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing,
so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.

One Reply to “Wednesday March 3, 2010”

  1. This made me cry…. tears for your loss and then tears of happiness when I think of the future in HOPE that God may Bless you immensely with children here on this earth.

    I recognize the poem by  Emily Dickinson. It is one of my favorites.

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