It was 3:23a.m. and I was sound asleep. The noise was so loud and horrific that I bolted straight out of bed and ran for my son’s room. In the three seconds it took me to cross the house I was sure one of three things had happened: 1) a car had crashed through the front side of the house, 2) the ceiling had collapsed in my son’s room or 3) someone had broken into the house. When I rounded the corner of the hallway and passed the nursery to open my son’s door I was confused to find that the noise was coming from the nursery and that the light was on. I threw open the door and immediately flipped off the light, thus quieting the noise that had terrified me to the core. Apparently, sometime during the night, one of my son’s balloons had made its way from the living room, down the hallway, into the nursery and had been caught up in the blades of the fan. The noise was the sound of the string wrapped so tightly around the motor that it had actually pulled the light cover up into the fan. I collapsed to the darkness of the floor, trembling from the adrenaline as my very groggy husband came slowly shuffling in the room to see what the noise was.
The whole ordeal lasted no longer than 90 seconds but I lay in bed shaking, heart pounding for another hour afterward. It was the first time in my life that I truly understood the depth of a mother’s love for her children. Ask anyone who knows me and they will tell you what a big chicken I am. Any other time in my life I would have run for my dad, run for my parent’s bedroom, or more recently woken my husband to go investigate as I hid under the covers. When my husband first became a firefighter I was so terrified of being in my house alone that I spent the night at my parent’s house every night he was on shift. For those of you who don’t know, that is every 3rd night….for nearly 2 years….and I was 27 years old.
Lying in bed, trying desperately to calm my overactive imagination, I began to think about what my life would be like if I were to lose my son. Tears streamed down my face as I thought about the hole that his absence would bring in my life. I immediately thought of Abraham and Isaac and what must have been going through Abraham’s mind as he stood over his son, armed raised to deliver the blow that would end little Isaac’s life and the depth of the sacrifice God had asked him to make. Then I thought of God and the sacrifice he made when he sent Jesus to the cross. The idea of sentencing my own son to death so that others can live is so far beyond my comprehension that it seems impossible but equally amazing is the fact that God allows each and every one of us to experience the parent/child relationship in our lives. For me, experiencing that relationship, both as a child and as a parent gives even more depth to the sacrifice that was made for my life.
For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.