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Cause I can be scattered, frail and shattered...

I think I’ll never forget.  

I had just sat down with my plate of eggs for breakfast.  I had just texted my best friend to tell her I had more cheese on my plate than eggs; I was feeling silly and excited, planning to leave within a couple hours for a road trip to see my family.  And just a few bites in and Travis toddles in, holding a lighted compact mirror that I had handed to him about fifteen minutes before.  He had been mesmerized with the opening and closing and the lights and I just let his chubby hands take off with it, without thinking.

He walks up, toothy grin, holding it out.  

And that’s when I notice the back is open.

I know my heart stopped.  And if not then, then it definitely paused and fell when I noticed, so quickly, that only three of the four small button-like batteries were in place.  

I put him quickly in his chair and then combed the living room.  Begging through tears, through prayers, plaguing Joel with questions, “Did you see Travis eat anything?  Honey, it’s so, so important!  Did you see where he was?”  Of course he hadn’t really been paying attention.  He had been eating and watching Mickey Mouse.  I pulled out the vacuum in hopes of it being the metal detector we didn’t obviously have.  Just find it.  Find it, please.  Don’t let it be in my baby’s tummy.  

I couldn’t find it anywhere.  I had checked all over, cleared the floor, checked the vents.  

Oh, God.

A panicked text to my friend, “Pray so hard right now!” and a call to my husband, to the doctor, and pairing shoes with jammies, we just flew out of here.  So fast.  I couldn’t pray anything other than, “Please, God.” over and over.  One of those times when the Spirit was interceding because my brain couldn’t find the words and my heart was just falling over and over in fear.

You have those times in your life where you feel, you know, they are game-changers.  On some level, good or bad outcome - it changes everything.  And you can go back to life before, or try to go back to life before, or you can be changed.  I thought about this as I sat on the bed, Joel coloring and Aaron wheeled away with Travis in his arms for an x-ray.  

I looked up and saw the tacked up sign, “What’s your pain level?” and a list of ten gradually less happy smiley faces.  I had to give a weak smile.  The image for Pain Level 1 was a happy face and I said outloud to no one, “That’s Travis.”  He was happy as could be.  He always is.  And then I walked through each stage - the frowns, the cartooned tears.  I got to the tenth caricature: “Worst pain imaginable”.  My heart stabbed.   

I asked Joel if he thought we should pray for Travis, which of course wasn’t really a question at all.  He nodded and laid down his red Crayon and reached his tiny hands over to mine.  And I cried and he repeated every word and we prayed for our little buddy and we prayed and prayed and begged that there was no battery in that precious little tummy.  The doctor had told us that if it was present, we would have to be sent to a surgeon.  I stood in that room and knew other parents had been there, under worse and even similar conditions.  I tried to be thankful and tried to trust and I did.  I mean, it’s why I was praying and why I was calling on His name.  

But I was still terrified.  I knew He held Travis.  Held me.  But I was still trembling.

Aaron is wheeled back in.  Our sweet, happy-go-lucky boy as smiley as ever.  And we wait.

The doctor finally comes in after like a year.  “Well...” he says.  My heart stops again.

“...He didn’t swallow it.  If it was there, it would stick out like a sore thumb.”

He left us with the happy news within moments and Aaron came over to hug me as I just sobbed.  Travis in his arms leaned into me, giving me a sweet baby hug.  I felt relief and I felt guilt and I felt overwhelmed that our story had a better ending, because I knew it could have easily gone the other way.

With grateful, tear-stained but now dried face, we headed home.  Not too far down the road, we hear a church bell.  Joel seemed confused, since he always notes there are crosses at churches, but he has never really seen or picked out a church with a bell or a bell tower.  I told him some churches have bells.  To tell the people it’s time to come worship.

That’s what I told him.

Hear the bell.  Come worship.

And I thought... that’s so us.  How often do we need a bell, or a wake-up call or a scare-your-pants-off morning to get your attention?  To remind you it’s all His, all the time... and He is so worthy, oh so worthy, of every heart-stopping moment, every prayer, every bit of worship we can muster up - even with tears pouring and hands shaking and collapsing into shoulders of loved ones to cry and beg and say thank you.  And maybe especially then.

I will sing.  I will log gratitudes.  I will love.  I will give thanks.

And I will worship.

“What happens in worship 
does not stay in worship. 
We live it out... No one can sing of your 
Redeemer for you.  
God is listening for your
 very voice, lifted in 
praise, singing the song
that tells your own story.”
~ Beth Moore, Introduction, Surprised By Worship

. . .

"Lord, I need You, oh I need You
every hour I need You.
my one defense,
my righteousness
Oh God, how I need You..."
~ Matt Maher, I Need You


  1. Oh goodness, how scary. I'm so glad Travis is okay. I dread those inevitable moments of panic, but am so comforted to know that we're not alone when they strike!


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