I said, “Yes.”

My friends and I are reading Love Does by Bob Goff in our weekly bible study group.  Among today’s questions regarding Chapter 9 was one that asked if we had ever been asked by God to do something and said “Yes.”  And it further questioned what that experience looked like.  I didn’t answer it within the group, partly because I have discussed my answer with these ladies many times before, and also because my answer takes me to an emotional place I wasn’t prepared to enter into today. But I said a big, “Yes” to God several years ago.

I remember it clearly.  My husband and I were in our kitchen in our Tuscarora Drive house.  We were dancing around the kitchen island with our three girls, listening to music.  My husband chose a new cd and song, and as it began to play he sang along, “Come on Becky… let’s go for a ride.”  I hadn’t heard this song before and the fact that it had my name in it made it one that I listened to even more eagerly than others….as if it were written just for me.  The fact that my husband was singing the lyrics to me made the song sound even more like a personal invitation.

Here is the song:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5zCnDulGkaU

This may seem like an innocent “Christian” song that happens to have my name in it, but in reality it was life-changing.  Within those few minutes listening to my husband sing along with Mr. Rice, I felt the world shift on its axle ever so slightly.  It is hard to explain, but I heard someone asking me those words in the song.

“C’mon, Becky, let’s go for a ride?”

I felt as though a pause button had been pushed.  I recollect a frozen smile on my face, trying to act nonchalant around my family in the midst of something happening that I could not recognize or describe…it was surreal; it was dreamlike; it was ephemeral.  But it was very, very concrete.  The moment passed quickly, but I felt a major shift happening for which I had no words or context.

At the time, I only focused on my husband singing those lyrics.  We have similar beliefs, but vastly different experiences when it comes to our Christianity.  My husband’s background is very evangelical and he likes to wear his faith on his sleeve.  My background is very Catholic and my faith at the time proved a more private issue.  He liked (likes) to challenge my beliefs and ask me why I believe what I do which is often frustrating for me and pushed me way out of my comfort zone.  As I listened to that song, I thought the physical and emotional stirring I was experiencing was between he and I.

On that evening in our kitchen, I said “yes” to my husband.  I said it inside my own head, not ready to share the vulnerable nature of my answer with him quite yet.  Up to that point in our marriage, I had fought pretty hard against his challenging questions, often defending my faith because he was irritating me rather than because I fully trusted what I was arguing.  My conscious decision that evening was to take this journey with him instead of near him.  That doesn’t mean I was ready to shuck my faith and beliefs, just ready to consider his as well.

It was a significant alteration in our relationship, even though I didn’t verbalize it to him until much later.  What I did not realize at that moment, was that the song’s question was not really coming from Rob.

Kate died later that year.

In the days following Kate’s death, I was slammed with the memory of that song and that transformative evening.  And it was in those dark days of grief and soul-emptying, that I realized I had said “Yes” to God that night.  I wholeheartedly trust that God had asked me to take this specific journey with Him.  I don’t believe He was asking me if I would choose for Kate to die, but I am firmly convinced that He invited me to allow her death to be a place where He might take root…in me and for others.  It was only in my empty, hollowed-out sorrow that I was able to recognize the question God was really asking me, AND to acknowledge I had told Him yes.

It was not an easy pill to swallow.  There were (and are) days that I raged inside; the nerve of a God who would ask me to take such a journey.  How dare He??  There were (and are) days that I felt completely inadequate to be such a vessel.  But in the midst of the worst heartache and distress, I felt God’s presence.  I felt the Spirit give me a moment of joy and gratitude on the very evening following our loss.  I felt carried by more friends and family than I knew existed.  I felt strength that can only be explained by the presence of God.

I said “Yes” to Him and He held me in the palm of His hand.  And I see now that it was a path that made redemption possible in Kate’s story.  I do not mean to suggest that I am the only redemptive factor, but that God used me to bring redemption in an otherwise tragic narrative.  It has given me a “piece of peace,” which ironically was a name I had given to my sweet Kate only months prior to losing her.

I haven’t listened to the song previously mentioned since I lost my daughter.  In fact, posting it here is the first time I have listened to it since that important night years ago.  But as I listen, I say again, “Yes.”

I renew my vow to walk this precipitous journey not simply near God and my husband, but with them.

 

 

 

 

 

 

3 Responses to “I said, “Yes.””

  1. Dedee says on :

    So beautiful. You are not just a little BS….you are an enormous Beautiful Soul! Made me cry. Made me think about a similar story of my mom having to attend a conference in Dallas 2 months before Mike died. Made me wonder if every mother has an experience like this that they are unaware of but as soon as their child passes, they are reminded of this very important experience. I wish I could see you right now and give you a big hug. You are such an inspiration to me! God Bless your beautiful soul.

  2. LilBS says on :

    Thanks Dedee. Such kind words and they are very, very appreciated. I hope your mom’s experience was able to give her some peace and/or redemption in losing Mike.

  3. Natalie says on :

    Very good write-up. I certainly love this site. Keep writing!

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