All The Sparkly Things

For though I fall I will rise again. Though I sit in darkness, The Lord will be my light.

Micah 7:8

In another life, as a preschool teacher, I remember all the fun projects. Glitter projects. Splatter paint. Poking holes in black paper. Holding it up to the light. How the light breaks through the paper! That was my favorite. Watching the tiny pin dots- small, but allowing more light than you’d think.

Life has thrown some struggle lately. A trip to the emergency room, not being able to breathe. Some hard medical decisions. 10 rounds of radiation. A new chemo. It has been rough but I am hanging in there and moving forward.

This is MBC. A worried husband in the middle of the night at the Emergency Room. It was hard to see him like this, but God showed me how blessed I was to have him.

Sometimes in sparkles….

Although things have been hard, I have had peace. Points of light. That black construction paper from my preschool days. My pastor talks about how jewelers show diamonds against a black piece of velvet.

Dark exposes light.

And as dark as things may seem, God still gives me light.

Not always in bright, shiny rays of light.

I worried about radiation. The last time, I used a radiation mask. It was the stuff of nightmares. A mask nailed down over my face. Ugh. My treatment lasted about four songs. That’s how I counted. Seemed like a lifetime. I prayed through it, asked Jesus to stay with me through it. Oh my. When I heard I had to do radiation again, I wasn’t sure I could do that again.

At my first appointment with my radiation oncologist, he told me I didn’t need a mask. What a relief. I had an amazing team of radiation technicians to help me too, God made a way.

God provided a wonderful team who encouraged me and filled my mornings with light and love.

Sometimes in sparkles…

Chemo. This new chemo was promising but came with side effects. I didn’t want to be sick again. I had the first round, then the second. I was tired but I was okay. No pain and no nausea. I could do this. Those little rays of light.

Even though things are hard, God makes a way. God provides. He provides in the details.
He provides in the points of light.

Sometimes in sparkles…

Over the lasts couple of weeks, people have reached out to bless us with gifts. Dinners out with my family. I feel guilty accepting these gifts, but then I remember people want to help. Who am I to get in the way of the blessing? So we have recently enjoyed a couple of nights together, spending time being a family, growing together. It was wonderful. Little rays of light.

God provided some wonderful people in our lives who reached out and provided us with opportunities to spend time together as a family, to make memories. It was priceless and we are forever grateful.

My daughter has been a big help to me through all of this recovery. She cleans the house. She makes my chocolate protein shakes. She puts on my eyebrows. Having a skilled teen makeup professional in the house has been a blessing, for sure. She has been a good and faithful servant. The other day, I didn’t think I could do it. I didn’t have to. She did. She painted my nails. She got me ready to go. She did it. She was run down too, but she used her power to make it happen. My Sweet Pea. Getting it done. Bright shining light. She has always been my little light to shine.

Sometimes in sparkles …

One of my favorite things to do is to bake. I love chocolate chip cookies, but love to mix ingredients, shape cookies, glaze – do all the things. Recently, I blessed my nurses with lemon meltaways and raspberry thumbprint cookies. Mom helped. I sat at the counter while Mom brought me ingredients and I added them to the mixer. Making the glaze was therapeutic. I zested the lemons. Once the batter chilled, I rolled the balls in circles, flattened them with a glass. Once baked, I made the glaze, spreading it on each delicate cookie. Slowly. No rush. I used my thumb to make the indentations for the thumprints. Mom sat patiently, next to me, like when I was a little girl, and let me do it. There was something special about that time. Little rays of light.

Lemon meltaways. Drops of lemon. Light in the dark. Soothe the soul.

Sometimes in sparkles…

Our church family came together for a prayer service last week. They sang. They quoted Scripture. They prayed over me. They showed us love. Friends prayed over me. At the end of the night, they sang “Amazing Grace” with candlles lit. It was beautiful. The room and our hearts were filled with their love, their light, and it made us feel so wonderful.

So many good things. So many blessings. But what I learned the most is that God never leaves us. There were nights when it felt dark. I felt alone. Forsaken. Left behind. There were times I questioned His timing. His motives. His intentions. But it was there, the whole time, within the circles of light. Those sparkles. It was dark. It was hard to see, but those rays of light? They consumed me. Covered me. Lit me on fire. On fire for hope.

Sometimes we expect that God will set the world on fire. God will send His love and His hope and His army down to us in a way that we can’t ignore. He has written the story. He has decorated. He hung the lights.

And sometimes in sparkles..

Still, even in the darkness…when you know God works in the dark, in the shadows, in the little bits of hope…that’s all you really need.

Sometimes it comes in sparkles…

Rays of light. Rays of hope. Faith. Love. God’s sparkles.