We forget a lot of things. We forget a relative's birthday, we forget to pay a bill, we forget to return a library book. We forget to return that phone call, to switch the load of laundry, to buy eggs at the grocery store. At the end of the day when we fall into bed, we forgot to let the dog out, we forgot to pack a lunch for the next day, we forgot to give the neighbor back their leaf blower.
There are certain things we remember. We remember our first kiss, we remember when we landed that coveted job, we remember receiving a new bike on that special Christmas day. We remember how bad that sunburn hurt three summers ago and we remember the taste of Grandma's apple pie. We close our eyes and remember the sight of our firstborn child in our arms moments after birth, the face of our third grade teacher, the soft fur of our favorite pet cat.
We try to forget that embarrassing thing we said at work. We wish we could forget the angry disagreement we had with our mom. We really want to remember the recipe for that awesome dessert, and we pretend to remember the name of the person we were introduced to last Sunday at church.
God gave us something this past week. Besides the obvious gift of a successful open heart surgery and restored health for our daughter Chloe, God gave us His presence. We felt Him when we released our daughter for surgery, when we anxiously sat in the pediatric surgical waiting room, when the nurse practitioner slowly sat down by us and said the valve might have to be replaced, when the surgeon smiled at us and said everything turned out fine after all. We knew God was holding us when we read all the comments and emails from the people praying for Chloe, and the strength of their conviction that God would answer helped us through each hour. We knew God had Chloe in the palms of His hands when we saw her in the ICU, and she couldn't talk because of the breathing tube down her throat but she painstakingly lifted her hands and tapped her mom's glasses to signal that she wanted her own glasses. We knew God was walking the hospital halls with us when he sent a hurting single mom our way to pray with and comfort even in our time of need, and two days later she glowed with relief and joy as her little boy was healing and recovering. She told us how much better she felt after praying with us because it reminded her God was still with her, even in the hospital, and there would be good to come out of this. We know God is watching over our home now, as our family is back together, and we sit at the table and eat pancakes together and bat around the shiny balloons that tell Chloe to Get Well Soon and yell at the television that shows our favorite football team losing. We know God is pressing His healing hands upon her stitched-together chest as we see her progress more and more each day, walking around the house, climbing in and out of the tub, laughing with her siblings over a silly joke.
We don't want to forget a single second of this. We want to remember each tear, each smile, each squeezing fist of fear and each sigh of relief, each nurse's face and each tube that came and went from Chloe's body. Because each one of these tells the story of what God has done and will continue to do through our daughter's life, and this story is for all of us who know Him as "our creator, our life sustainer, Deliverer, our comfort, our joy.....our shelter, our peace in the midst of the storm."
**The video isn't working. Here is another one, but without the lyrics.