You Raise Me Up

1 Peter 5:6

Steve Martin
Steve Martin

Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time.

 

In yesterday’s post “I’ll Remember You” I wrote about visiting my uncle Charles Martin in the Hospice unit in Wentworth. He was non-responsive to me and I just sat there and thought about him, remembering the things he had meant to me. That was around 1:00pm. My cousin, his daughter, Alicia texted with me after I conveyed to her that the nurse had said his breathing pattern had changed and there was more congestion. Alicia, being concerned, left work and headed for Hospice. Not long after she arrived her father peacefully stepped through heaven’s gate.

Yesterday afternoon I had a writing time appointment for a couple of hours. Last night Shirley and I had dinner plans with some members of a former church. We talked, laughed, and got reacquainted. We didn’t get home til around 11:00pm. I was tired. My mind was spinning about the happenings of the day and what was to come in the days ahead. I texted a little with Alicia and collapsed.

Today, as I sit to write, all I can think about is my family; uncle Charles, aunt Louise, my cousin Alicia… and all those aunts, uncles, cousins, parents, grandparents, great grandparents… Aunt Minnie, Andrew and Pearl Moore. Thinking of them humbles me to know how privileged I am to be part of this family of faith. There were many paths I could have chosen to walk, many of which would not have ended well. But this family, this family was and is a faith family who cared about the welfare of each other. For all of them church was a vital part of life that was to become part of one’s daily identity. Everyone in our family is part of the church. They are dedicated servants of Jesus Christ, bearers of the grace of God, who would give their last ounce of devotion for the church.

They lived a life of faith before me that made a life of faith real. In fact my calling to ministry probably began way back in that upstairs children’s Sunday school classroom in the white house beside the church, or the basement classroom where Dickie Joyce and I would fold newspapers on cold rainy mornings, or the upstairs fellowship hall where the youth actually had a dance. More than likely, it began on Mama Martin’s front porch, side porch, around that big old kitchen table, or as I witnessed my family living out the faith before my eyes everyday. Perhaps it was reinforced every time I wondered why a young couple would open their hearts and home to take in two boys and raise them as their own for six months.

I think it was all those things and many more – good things – that went into the make-up of our family. Being part of this family has been a blessing from God. As I think about my family Josh Groban’s song comes to mind because I do believe with all my heart that all of you raised me up to be more than I could be.

“You Raise Me Up”

When I am down and, oh, my soul, so weary;
When troubles come and my heart burdened be;
Then I am still and wait here in the silence,
Until you come and sit awhile with me.

You raise me up, so I can stand on mountains;
You raise me up to walk on stormy seas;
I am strong when I am on your shoulders;
You raise me up to more than I can be.

There is no life – no life without its hunger;
Each restless heart beats so imperfectly;
But when you come and I am filled with wonder,
Sometimes, I think I glimpse eternity.

You raise me up, so I can stand on mountains;
You raise me up to walk on stormy seas;
I am strong when I am on your shoulders;
You raise me up to more than I can be.

You raise me up to more than I can be.

Dear Lord, I am very thankful that you gave me such a faithful family who raised me up to be more than I could be. In their lives you were present and real. Especially today attend to the need of those who feel grief and loss most sharply to remind them that you walk with them and hold them with a love that is eternal. In and through Jesus. Amen.

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