I cannot lie. I am a SUCKER for that old Roberta Flack tune from January of 1973. Its that insanely mesmerizing, and emotional chord progression with such a constant bass line and the chimes that can put any musician in a trance. The only thing is I have NO idea what she is saying or actually singing about. I can deduce or assume that its about a break up but I can’t be sure. None the less, those words alone “killing me softly” sounds a lot like what I am going through these days.
I once heard it said “God is NOT trying to hurt you by what you are going through. He’s trying to KILL YOU!” Clearly that wasn’t implicative of a literal physical death but of a spiritual ‘death to self’. My reply? “Well, IT’S WORKING!”. He is certainly great at killing everything in me that is not like him. I am in one if not one the hardest season of my life as it relates to my family. Specifically my Dad. He is a a strong, hard working, southern, PROUD man. Always has been all of my life. Not the kind of man that would ever or did ever ask for help with anything. Proud. But 12 years ago when he was only 56 years old, my mother passed away. She was his life. And her passing was supernatural to say the least – but thats a blog for another day. Since then he has aged TREMENDOUSLY. He’s now 68 years old in body but much older in health, mental and emotional capacity. He is bound to a wheelchair because of an amputated leg, He is legally blind, and he has to endure the brutality of kidney dialysis 3 times per week with no hope of a kidney replacement at this point. He’s very unhappy to say the least. The last few months, he has progressively and aggressively gotten worse. So much so that my brother and I decided it would be best to move to the mid west since we both live in Missouri now and he was the primary reason for our journey’s to North Carolina -our home place.
Being in Missouri, and specifically in Kansas City, means that I am now his primary care taker. Suffice it to say, that is a LOT of responsibility for me being that I am in full time ministry, have a wife and 3 kids at home, have a home based business going (my wife does), and a non-profit organization to run. Its just a lot. My Dad has been here 6 days and to be frank, I am EXHAUSTED. The endless hours of taking care of him these 6 days has been more than I have ever experienced. ONLY TODAY have I been able to see light at the end of the tunnel as I will have help tomorrow and for the rest of the week.
I told my wife today that I am DETERMINED to pass this test. Whatever it is that the Lord is trying to teach us, I am DETERMINED to learn it. I don’t want to walk around this mountain again! But amid the madness I am finding my center: gratitude. It would be much easier if things were different but the Lord is priming my family for some thing great. He’s killing me… but softly. I’m trying not to go kicking and screaming but with a heart that Is grateful that I even have a man to call Dad. Grateful that its not as bad as it COULD be. Grateful that though God kills… he kills softly.