The peace of a moment
This picture was taken the night my brother got in a car accident a little over a week ago. The quality is by no means awesome, and I snapped it quickly so I could rush back into the Emergency Room to sit with my brother. It also doesn't begin to do justice to the beauty of the moment. It was a full double rainbow. The nurse came in and forced me to go out and see it. I wanted to brush it aside, but she basically forced me out of the room. It was a much needed break and moment of beauty.
For some reason this picture came to mind this morning. I honestly had forgotten about it. There was so much going on this last week, on top of so many emotions, that this wasn't a piece of the story that I really remembered. It didn't seem to rank on my scale of importance.
Instead I've soaked in the details of the accident. How I've heard the story, and retold the story, dozens of times. How he pulled out of a parking lot and was hit by a jeep going over 45mph on the driver's side door. How he blacked out with his foot on the gas, jumped the curb, went into the grass, then came back into traffic and hit a truck. I see the police officer and doctor telling my brother he was lucky to be alive. Over and over again, based on the pictures of the car, he shouldn't have made it.
I still remember the phone call from my mom. The seconds that dragged out into minutes before we knew the details. Before we knew if he was alive. The feeling of jumping into my car to look for him. We didn't know where he was at. The hospital hadn't called yet. I needed to find him.
I remember seeing him in a neck brace and not moving on the bed once we arrived at the hospital. Immediate relief that he was alive, but still the uncertainty of the detail of his injuries. I still remember the feeling of being totally numb as I walked through each step of the process to take care of things. Supporting my mom as she fell apart, seeing her son bloody. Listening to the nurses and doctors. Talking to my brother. Comforting him. Holding his hand.
I remember calling and texting so many people. Again relaying details. Driving to see my brother's girlfriend at work to tell her that he was okay. I remember the ambulance ride to another hospital where there were trauma surgeons to monitor his condition the next couple of days. And again more paperwork. More nurses. More details to recall and also take in.
I also remember the presence of so many people who love me. Friends that really are there for me no matter what. A friend who came to the ER to support me even when she should have been studying for a midterm. Friends who texted me their constant support, love and encouragement. Friends who prayed fiercely to the point where I could feel the effects of it so strongly. A friend who did my laundry because I was behind. Friends who drove over an hour to visit me. To take me out to dinner and bring me fresh clothes and listen to me talk. A boyfriend who stayed up all night texting so I wasn't alone. And friends who picked up details at work because I couldn't be there.
The next few days were a whirlwind of activity, exhaustion, brokenness, frustration, thankfulness, major successes, several failures, coordinating details, moving my brother into my house for recovery, and leaving for a church retreat 2.5 hours away.
I forgot about the rainbow, until this morning. I want to go back to that moment. To see the beauty I missed. Why is it so easy to miss the little moments? To miss the beauty of a small moment.
That rainbow was meant to draw me out of my situation. To take me out of the stress of the moment. That rainbow was meant to bring me rest. To draw my eyes upward. To remember the promises I've been given. And it helped. I know it brought me a teeny glimpse of relief. It gave me just what I needed to continue.
At the retreat I was receiving prayer. My eyes were closed, my arms held out with palms raised, and my face lifted to Jesus. It was a perfect time of peace and encouragement. One of my dearest friends came up behind me, laid her hand on me and just wept. Crying is a struggle for me. My emotions have been shut down so long, that healing them is a long process. And while they are being awakened, they are still a bit behind. So we sat in this moment. It could have been 5 minutes or 15. I'm not sure. But it was exactly what I needed. I couldn't cry for myself, so God sent someone who dearly loved me, to cry for my hurt and pain and years of brokenness. I'm still blown away by the purity and beauty of that moment. It was perfect.
That moment gave me exactly what I needed to continue. To fight to push forward. And not just to fight, but also to just sit sometimes. To rest in the peace of a moment. To loose track of time and just be. To take in the beauty around me. To be thankful for how far I've come. To celebrate my successes. To forgive myself of the mess ups. To be excited for what's to come.
And even when I miss it, God can still bring me back around. He's so patient. He can still remind me. He can draw me out to look up. He can bring peace in the chaos. And joy after the pain.