We will always remember Ellie for her love for others, her creativity, sensitivity, and delight in life! Ellie's light has spread far and wide... may it continue to shine in our hearts.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Joy of the Soul

Ellie had a good night last night...nothing like the previous one! She is actually still sleeping. Thanks so much for praying.

I have been giving a lot of thought lately to joy. Sometimes at the most unexpected moments, this deep bubbling joy will rise up the surface and spill out. Often for no particular reason the sights and sounds around me will stand out in sharp relief and I will feel as if the air is fresher and the colors are more beautiful than ever before. And I see this joy in Ellie. God has given her a most precious gift, as she sings and giggles through each day. Obviously, there are times of pain when she cries, but when the pain is over that glorious joy is right behind it. What I have come to realize is that this kind of joy just cannot be summoned up out of ourselves on a whim...it's a wonderful gift from God. We picked the verse on the header of this blog with care, and I love the whole passage that it comes from. Often one or two different verses will have special meaning for me, but I think it's time to just read off the entire 8 verses as a whole: (The verses on the header are out of the New Living Translation, which I loved for Ellie, but the following are out of the New King James - there are several verses that I love in this version.)

Psalm 63: 1-8
"O God, You are my God; early will I seek You; my soul thirsts for You, my flesh longs for You in a dry and thirsty land where there is no water. So I have looked for you in the sanctuary, to see Your power and Your glory. Because Your lovingkindness is better than life, my lips shall praise You. Thus I will bless You while I live; I will lift up my hands in Your name. My soul shall be satisfied as with marrow and fatness, and my mouth shall praise You with joyful lips. When I rememeber You on my bed, I meditate on You in the night watches. Because You have been my help, therefore in the shadow of Your wings I will rejoice. My soul follows close behind You, Your right hand upholds me."

What stood out to me in this passage was the word soul: "my soul thirsts for You...my soul shall be satisfied (NLT says 'more than the richest feast')...my soul follows close behind You." I guess that's maybe where the difference is, it's on a soul level. I get so tired sometimes and I cry and I feel selfish and miss my old life (and for that matter, Ellie does too) but in the end, our souls are satisfied...and we have joy.

May God bless you all today with this wonderful gift of JOY!


At 9:52 AM, Anonymous Sophia said...

"For it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure."
Philippians 2:13

At 11:21 AM, Blogger Mrs said...

Sarah! Did you see it?

"My soul shall be satisfied as with MARROW AND FATNESS. . ." The very things we're praying for Ellie, right???

You're choosing joy right now over fat cheeks and healthy marrow. . . and your soul is fully satisfied. Praise God!

At 12:14 PM, Anonymous Sarah said...

Thank you both!

Great verse in Philippians.

I did miss it! How funny...I was so focused on the words 'soul' and 'joy' that I breezed right past the 'marrow and fatness'...how funny! Thanks so much for pointing that out.:-)
(OK, I have to ask..."mrs" who are you? I've been curious for a while, and I've thought that maybe I should know...but I don't and so I was wondering if you would tell me?)

At 12:47 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sarah -
I found this Margaret Becker quote in one of my Bibles today and thought of you guys. We continue to pray many times a day. You're on our hearts! Blessings! Carla

"There is a moment in time when the KNOWLEDGE of love and the EXPERIENCE of love precariously meet to form one brilliant form of rest for the soul. From this place, every direction is the same -backwards...forwards...all indelibly marked with the peace that comes when it is finally understood that NOTHING can shake you from the firm grip of Love's hand."

At 12:49 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sarah, Thanks for encouraging and challenging me. I love you. The pictures are great. YOu always look so beautiful. The kids love seeing the pictures of Ellie and Ethan. They want to see them over and over.

At 6:59 AM, Anonymous Sarah said...

Thanks for the quote, Carla! I'm going to add that one to my collection for sure!

Thanks, Vickie! I love and miss you so much. Tell the kids that Ellie misses them...I'm so glad they're enjoying the pictures.

At 12:11 PM, Blogger Mrs said...

Sorry, Sarah! I had signed my name once before, but I forget you hear from tons of people and I'll sign it every time now.

We've been praying for your brother, Chad, for years! His heart is/was so burdened for Ellie and he's asked everyone to pray. Of course, I'm one of the ones who "knows" your family through Nancy, too . . . we came to FL in 1998 when the question of your Dad and what happened was still going on and went to church with her at Circle. Hard to be a celebrity, isn't it? ;-) Especially for such difficult things. I think we met briefly at the memorial service but I hardly expect you to remember me at all!

Still, the testimony of your family, in ALL things, brings such glory to God!

In Him,
JoAnna Welsh
Circle Community Church

At 8:10 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

HI! Praying for you all!! Many over here in PNG have heard of Ellie and are praying! We knew Rusty and Ginger in Bible school. Nate(my husband)just flew Chirstmas items in to Chad and Janeen there in the tribe. We check often to see how you all are doing and we pray for all of you! God bless as you minister there! IN HIM! Barb Schrag

At 8:34 AM, Anonymous Sarah said...

Thanks Barb! We appreciate your prayers so much. Thanks for your part in taking care of Chad and Janeene as well! We miss them so much, but know that these are exciting and difficult times for them. Thank you for all that you do there. And thanks for taking the time to comment!


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