Tuesday, February 21, 2017

"Please Help Me!"

Our tired bodies climbing the stairs together, Essie headed to her room, and I headed to mine, relieved that she was retiring so willingly. I set my sights on a long, hot shower to wash off the day. Not necessarily a difficult day, just a long, normal one, and I relished the late evening solitude.

Several minutes later, under the heated, streaming water, I heard Esther cry out: an urgent, sharp sob, high-pitched and intense.
Her cry crescendoed into a wail, "Please help me!"
More crying.
"Please, please help me!"

What ten year old cries that?! My heart melted right into the drain along with the running water.
"Please help me!"
Pounding footsteps thundered up the stairs, and I heard muffled voices through the wall that separates my shower and the stairway. I bounded out of the shower, grabbed a towel and rounded the staircase sopping wet. Corbin had already gotten to Essie, along with Bran and Basden. Essie continued to wail and cry while everyone else huddled around her foot.

"She stepped on an earring," Bran told me, raising an eyebrow.
I would love to say here that Branson and Basden acted out of the utmost compassion, but seeing the smirks on their faces, I sent strong eye-to-eye communication that they be nice. Do not make fun. I took note that they had both run to her rescue. But seeing the severity of the impaled earring stem lessened their sympathies.

In Esther's defense, it was a decent puncture. She'd leaped from her furry rug into bed, and in doing so put all her weight on the bayonet-earring. And it was her "starter" earring, the one from getting her ears pierced, so the stem is thick and solid 14k gold. Not real willing to yield as it struck her tender, unsuspecting foot.

Checking in on her later, I found Corbin snuggled in bed with her, both sleeping soundly. Evidently she fell asleep whimpering and slightly offended, but I imagine comforted and reassured in her daddy's arms.

As for me, even after rounding that corner and realizing it was minor, even after seeing her snoozing contentedly, the thing that kept echoing in my mind was that awful wail, "Please help me!"

Nothing would have kept Corbin and me from running to help our daughter. I don't know what Corbin was doing downstairs when he heard her cry out, but it wouldn't have mattered. Even as sinful, imperfect parents, absolutely nothing would have kept us from dropping everything to save Essie.

So how much more does our Father in Heaven RUN and rush and bend to save us?
Sometimes we get ourselves into the mess, and sometimes the mess just happens. But in His perfect love, it doesn't matter.
He delights in saving, loving, comforting us.

I think of the "Please help me!" cries I've heard all around me just this week... failing grades, panic attacks from stress, an unexpected pregnancy, bad phone calls from teachers, biopsies, and setting the tombstone on a child's grave. All of these things ~ and yes even earring impalements ~ the Lord delights in saving us.

Which of you, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will you give him a snake? If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask Him!  Matt 7:9-11