Early yesterday morning, my daughter, Emmie, and my grandson, Brody, headed to the airport. Lilli is staying on with us for another ten days before I take her home just in time for her birthday.
I’ve written about those goodbyes before. If Lilli could see the crazy emotions in my heart, she would say, “Oh my gosh…this is ree-dic-a-lus!”
And it is.
As I was stripping sheets from the guest bed, and piling up bath towels for the laundry, I found myself humming Jim Croce’s “Time in a Bottle.”
Yes, I really am that big of a sap.
As the song continued it’s melancholy strains in my head, I began gathering up baby equipment to go back in the closet and realized with such a sadness that Brody would never use some of the infant equipment again. This was his first and last visit in which he would fit in those particular items, and I found myself standing with a bouncer seat in my hands and tears running down my face.
If I could save time in a bottle, the first thing that I’d like to do is to save everyday like a treasure and then, again, I would spend them with you.
I may not be able to save time in a bottle, but it’s a great comfort to me that God does save my tears in a bottle. I’ve always been so moved by the fact that He counts my tears as valuable enough to save. To me, it proves that He sees our tears, not as vanity, but an expression of our deepest emotions, whether of sadness and grief, or happiness and joy. They matter, not just to us, but to the God who created us and loves us beyond all reason.
You know, now that I think about it, He might just save time in a bottle, too. After all, everyday is a treasure to Him, and we’ll be spending an eternity together, perhaps relishing some of that treasure, again, and listening to Him fill in all the blanks for the things we didn’t see or understand the first time through.
Time to move on, because, well, time marches on. My tears have dried, and I smile, knowing that He screwing the lid on tight, keeping those tears, and these moments, safely in His care.
“You keep track of all my sorrows.You have collected all my tears in your bottle.You have recorded each one in your book.” Psalm 56:8 NLT
“He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. All these things are gone forever.” Revelation 21:4 NLT
“Because of the sacrifice of the Messiah, his blood poured out on the altar of the Cross, we’re a free people—free of penalties and punishments chalked up by all our misdeeds. And not just barely free, either. Abundantly free! He thought of everything, provided for everything we could possibly need, letting us in on the plans he took such delight in making. He set it all out before us in Christ, a long-range plan in which everything would be brought together and summed up in him, everything in deepest heaven, everything on planet earth.” Ephesians 1:7-10 MSG
These maternal/grand-maternal good-byes are never easy. I’m preparing my heart to make a few of my own. As you pack away the baby gear and many countless memories attached therein, I pray God’s tender compassion to minister over you at your place of deepest need.
My heart breaks for you and with you!! As you will find out, it matters not their age, as they grow, your heart grows with them, when they leave the tears will always come. God with His tender heart of understanding will have waiting a larger bottle.<3