Tuesday, July 10, 2007

My Father's Eyes

Dad is having trouble with macular degeneration and I'll be driving him to the eye doctor today to get another shot in the eye. Like most troubles, he's taking it in stride.

We have a good relationship... But I wasn't so sure... Those first couple days in the nursery at Marion General Hospital...

Where do I begin? The crib they placed me in was drab and very plain. Some of the other babies had newer and brightly colored cribs... And one of my wheels wobbled.

Why me?

My mother's milk was fine. But some of the other infants got formula, and though it wouldn't have been as good for me, I think I should have been afforded the experience. And maybe there was another breast nearby that had sweeter more abundant milk? Sadly I'll never know.

There was a child in the crib next to mine that I liked very much and whose company gave me comfort. Suddenly she was gone... Leaving me terribly lonely.

And what about the time the doctor came in and circumcised me? How could a loving father allow that to happen? All that pain and humiliation... Where was Dad then?

There were many rooms in the hospital that I never got to see. Dad could have easily addressed that situation... And the most painful inequity of all was that I only had 48 hours in the nursery! Some infants had 49, 50.... Some even got to stay for 72 hours!!! How was that fair?

Still, I left the nursery a long time ago and I now know that Dad had an entirely different perspective on my first two days at the hospital.

He was there for me, making sure that I had everything I needed.. Even if I didn’t get everything I wanted.

But he was thinking about getting my bedroom ready… About my first steps… The talks we would have and the things we would do when I was no longer encumbered by such an underdeveloped brain and body.

I think the reason why I cried so much was simply because… All I could see was the nursery. I should have had more faith in my father.

Being an adult is a pretty glorious thing compared to those first 48 hours, and I almost never think about those two days. Still, the things of the nursery seemed very important to me at the time... But my life didn’t really begin until my father took me home.

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Some day my Heavenly Father will take me home, and it will be like waking from dream. And being in the presence of Jesus will make the best experiences on Earth seem like a warm bottle of milk in the nursery. I will never be more conscious, satisfied, or fulfilled than I will be on that day... As a creature created to fly... Finally spreads his wings.

9 comments:

Bekah said...

This is really, really good. Three reads later (apparently I still suffer from the underdeveloped brain part) - I think I've fully absorbed it. I think it should go in the best of list. You have made me think...and that is good.

Malott said...

Bekah,

Glad you liked it. I think being in the presence of the Lord will be such a fulfilling, satisfying, and spectacular experience... Well, it will make my little analogy a severely understated thing.

Delta said...

There is no way you would know this, but I have a dear friend who is in the end stages of this life. She has battled cancer for over 2 years. Yet, she is at peace, knowing she is going to be with her Father, the Lord G-d, and His Son, Jesus. That is her focus. That is faith, to me. So, thank you for the posting, Malott. The timing was right on spot for me.

Malott said...

Delta,

What a wonderful witness your friend is.

I was going to say that I wondered how anyone could peacefully face death without knowing Jesus. But actually I wonder how you face a [normal] day without knowing Him.

Whether in illness or tragedy, sooner or later all the distractions break down... and you're left alone... Doing what you were created to do... Needing Him.

Bekah said...

I realize I've already commented once, so now I border on just talking too much (they don't call me Motor Mouth for nothin'!). But I have to say that the response you left me yesterday has left me in as much deep thought as the post itself.

I am often told (usually in a good way) that I have an unusual relationship with God in that I'm quite frank and honest in an overly blunt way when I address Him. While I still hold to my position that it's okay to be that conversational with God, what you said also made me remember that He is...you know...GOD. I think I need to kick the respect level up a notch.

When I was reading my Bible and journaling last night, I had to admit that lately my attitude has not been one that has absorbed His fulfillment...satisfaction...or greatness in any way. That was a much needed reminder. Thank you.

Malott said...

Bekah,

Knowing what I do about you, I'm confident that I'm the very -last person- that should presume to give you spiritual advice.

But I believe everyone should go to the Lord once a day with their knees and elbows on the floor and their face in their hands. Sometimes the spiritual follows the physical... and in that position you're pretty much defining your relationship with your Father.

But it sounds to me like you go to your Father as a father's child would - a child who knows her Father VERY well.

Bekah said...

I enjoy reading your thoughts on the spiritual life - and specifically on prayer. I'm a sponge when it comes to stuff like this...I really like to see how other people relate to God and probably learn more from observation than from anything I could ever diligently study.

Your thoughts on prayer posture (which I've read some before) have given me much to think about. I absolutely think you have a very good point there - one that I should further pursue in my own interactions with God.

I love advice. (Don't tell my parents. I'm sure they'd tell you I never listen.) So I appreciate your openness to share from your heart and prayer life!

SkyePuppy said...

Bekah,

Have you read A.W. Tozer's "The Pursuit of God"?

I took it to read on a flight when work sent me somewhere, and there were times I just wanted to get out of my seat and lie prostrate in the aisle for wonder of Who God is and how great His desire is for us. (I kept my seatbelt on. Even in pre-9/11 days, it would have freaked people out.)

Anyway, I recommend the book.

Bekah said...

It has been a very long time since I read that book, but I do have it. One year they gave it to all the employees here. As I recall, it wasn't a terribly long book - maybe I should pull it out and reread it. I do remember finding it very powerful when I read it before.

Hmmm....I have a feeling God isn't going to let me away from this topic anytime soon!