lately at church i’ve been hanging out in the nursing moms room. mostly because asher’s feeding lands smack in the middle of service, and because he’s kind of getting more active and a tad distracting so i play with him in that room. i’ll probably put him in the nursery soon, but i haven’t yet.
they have a one way window in the room so that you can still see the service while you’re feeding your babe. pretty handy! they even have rocking chairs set up, a speaker so you can hear the pastor and a light dimmer. all great things.
last week while i was sitting in there trying to rock a stubborn baby to sleep, i was watching a woman and her son interact in the last row directly in front of the mirror. she has been attending our church since i can remember so it wasn’t unordinary for her and her son to be sitting there together. that’s where they usually sit. i think she chooses those seats so that she can exit the sanctuary quickly should she need to. her son is older, but he is also mentally disabled. i’m not sure of his age, but if i had to guess i would say he is in his late 40’s.
sometimes during the service he will speak loudly or stand up. no one minds because everyone knows their situation. he seems fairly quiet most of the time though, and inquisitive as well.
last week and this morning as i was sitting in the rocking chair i was watching them interact with each other. she seems to be very kind, gentle and loving toward him. he doesn’t seem to respond too much to her touch, but you can tell he’s very comfortable with her. when they stand to worship, he stands side by side to her, as close as he can without leaning too much into her. she welcomes it each time by putting her arm around his waist and her other arm rests on his forearm. he doesn’t stand through the entire worship set and when he sits down she carefully helps him find his way to his chair and strokes his head gently and pats his arm, reassuring him that she’s close by. wildwood isn’t know for charismatic worshippers in the audience but she raises her hands each time. with her eyes closed she sings each word like she believes it.
during the message she sits closely next to him, continuing to put her arm around his shoulders, pat his forearm and rest her hand on the back of his neck. she looks over at him often always with a smile on her face.
as i’m sitting in the rocking chair trying to get asher to fall asleep, i’m completely mesmerized by this mothers unconditional love and service to her son. you can just tell that she cares for him very deeply. i started tearing up watching her make sure that he was cared for and comfortable. she kept asking him if he was ok and followed it up by telling him that she loved him. here is this woman, who i think is a single mom, taking care of this adult man who can’t really do much for himself and she believes that God is good. That she is loved by him and that he cares for her and her sons needs. That God created him to be just as he is. That he loves him just as he is. That she isn’t forgotten or that he didn’t make a mistake when he created him just so.
this morning i watched her raise her hands to the ceiling with tears streaming down her face and sing
You’re the Lord of Creation
The Creator of all things
You’re the King above all kings
You’re the strength in the weakness
You’re the love to the broken
You’re the joy in the sadness
i could sense the Lord telling me several things by watching all of this. mostly how quick i am to not believe in his goodness. i’m a pretty fortunate person. no health issues, a wonderful blessed life, a great marriage and a perfectly healthy baby boy. even with all of that i can still doubt his faithfulness and promises in my life. i quickly shift blame to him when things don’t go my way. my heart is so dark at times. my flesh wins so often.
she knows Jesus in a way that I don’t. i want to know Jesus like she knows him. she understands his unconditional love and sacrifice for us because that’s how she treats her son. without thought she loves and serves him with everything she has. it was an incredibly humbling moment for me to experience and i’m thankful the Lord spoke to me and showed me an easily forgotten part of himself and a part of myself that i choose to bury and not expose.