Joy vs. Sorrow

Thursday

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Friday

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It’s been a very surreal week–life unexpectedly interrupted by my uncle’s passing compounded with 2 nights at the hospital with Nornor. A week I won’t soon forget, yet wish I could somehow erase and rewrite. The piercing sorrow and the oppressive anxiety aspire to take center stage with reprehensible audacity. When I avert my gaze to God instead, I am able to see past all that is “wrong” in my human perspective. I begin to notice the graceful glow of beauty and hope.

One of Nora’s nurses wrote a piece about this as it pertains to Nora. She graciously shared it with me and has allowed me to share it here. She wrote this days before the loss of my uncle and Nora’s elevated heart rate / stay in the hospital, but how appropriate now more than ever:

Today’s devotion is taught by Nora Yusko. What an amazing teacher. Last night I had the privilege of spending time with her. She amazed me so. She is so fascinated about everything. She looks at her hands and fingers in awe. She looks at the colors in books and coos with the most innocent sounds of joy. She looks into my face as if to say, “Isn’t this so so wonderful?”

I began to realize how to pray. Lord, please make me more like Nora. She has things in her life, major things, that could have gone better but she does not look at those things. She looks for something, anything around her to enjoy. When you observe her it’s obvious praise and thanksgiving for something. We all have bad things that happened to us….but why do we make that our focus?

It’s what you look at that matters or you would not be looking at it. We have a choice. God said “fix your eyes on these things……..”

I felt Nora would have laughed at my thoughts with a squeal of advice,”silly Tracy, don’t you know the things that you can’t change should not make you miss what you have right now? Look at my hand! Isn’t it amazing?? Praise God……wow… He made this!!”

Lord, I pray that I would look at my grandchildren the way she looks at her hand. That every husband would look at his wife and every wife her husband in the same amazement. That as we read God’s Word we would stop and say, “Wow, He’s amazing!” meditating and staring into the reality of it all.

While I was still meditating about this in my bed this morning I saw Nora in a vision and she had a crown… a jeweled crown in her hand that sparked. Is that where her sparkle comes from? Does she see this now or will she see it one day? Is this why she is so resplendent? I could see her a little bigger, but all Nora as she is in her nature…. throwing that crown and then squealing with a chuckle as it flies into the air. I never saw that scripture in such a content. I always thought we would be so shocked at God’s goodness, not like what I was seeing. She is not shocked or fearful, she is amazed and wants to be herself, as she is right here, right now, this moment just God’s little girl.

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Thank you for that, Tracy!

Although tempting, we must not make our focus on all that is wrong. There is so much beauty just waiting to bring joy!

Today I find joy in the FACT that my Uncle has been gloriously received into the Kingdom of God. He left this earth doing what he loved, riding his bike on a beautiful spring afternoon. He will never know another moment of pain, or even the discomforts and restrictions of growing old. I find joy in imagining the blessed reunions that took place once he entered Eternity, and those blessed reunions that will take place for each of us when it is someday our turn. Can you imagine!!??

Today I find joy in Nora’s greatly improved heart rate. It is steadily getting lower and lower. Last check it was in the 140s with O2 sats on the very high 90s. I find joy in her sweet smile and her precious squeals, her huge, mighty purpose.

I give such thanks for each and every instance of joy especially during these trying times.

Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable if anything is excellent or praiseworthy think about such things. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.
(Phillipians 4:4-9)

11 thoughts on “Joy vs. Sorrow

  1. Love what Tracy wrote and absolutely love the video!!. Haha, would love to play with Nornor that way. Monday 8am and I have a big smile after seeing her !!. Love her smile and her hair … Delicious !!! . Muuuaahhh 🙂

  2. Do you ever have those moments when you feel like God kinda smacks you in the back of the head? I just had one! Tracy’s words went to my core. I can just see Nora looking at her hand and seeing so much more than what we take for granted.

    The video is adorable! I love that everytime anyone makes a bird sound, she squeals and almost tries to mimick it. What love your family has!!

    PS. Her chunky little legs are awesome!!!

    • I can relate to everything you just said Lauren. And I noticed the thing with the bird sounds too. God is amazing. This baby and her family are amazing.

  3. Um, wow. What a powerful post and of course I read it exactly the moment I needed to. I’m not sure if there’s any way for you to know how much hope, joy, and the ability to see things through our Creator’s eyes that this precious child and your faithfulness in clinging to Him and then sharing that through this blog, brings this world. I know she means everything in the world to you but she also means the world to so many of us. I am AMAZED at The Lord and what He does through the wonder of little Nora’s hands, her squeals, her family’s steadfast love and care for her, how she touches the people all around her! Tracy, what a BEAUTIFUL post- thank you so much for sharing! Aleisa, thank you for being so faithful in sharing this blog. It would take me another full two pages to tell you what all God did in my heart through just this post on this particular morning, never mind all the others. Suffice it to say, that it certainly changed my day and most likely week, or more and caused me to see the things I was so ready to grumble about this morning as hidden treasures that are in fact a reason to rejoice. God bless all of you.

  4. Love this so much and pray that I can enjoy each day with the same amazement and awe that the little ones do. Lord make us more like the children. I want to see the world for all its wonder and not the bad and pain that is so easy for me to focus on. Today, like everyday, is given to us and is a blessing. So instead of waking up dreading what I have to do I pray that I can wake up thankful to be a mother, daughter, sister, wife, nurse and accept the responsibilities that come along with these as things that help me connect with others and my family and take in the wonders around me. Lord please open my eyes to see the glory and wonder and not focus on the wordly sin and pain. God thank you for the slowing down of Nora’s heart. I pray that it stays where it should and that you continue to use her to minister and lead others to you by her amazing will and determination and innocence.

  5. What a beautiful tribute to Nora from her nurse!! Sometimes we are just so touched by the little ones that we care for and God speaks to us through them!! As a nurse I carry the verse you quoted that starts ” Do not be anxious about anything” in my pocket at work and often refer to it when times are stressful as it gives me great comfort!! Thank you for your continued posts about your precious Nora !!

  6. TRACY’S POST IS AMAZING. BETWEEN NORA, HER WONDERFUL FAMILY AND NOW NORA’S NURSE, I AM THINKING HOW THANKFUL I AM FOR SO MANY THINGS. AS HUMAN BEINGS, WE SOMETIMES DWELL ON THINGS HAPPENING IN THE WORLD, AND WE SHOULD BE DWELLING ON WHAT IT WILL BE LIKE WHEN WE GET TO THE HEAVENS GATES AND OUR EYES MEET WITH THE EYES OF OUR HEAVENLY FATHER. WHAT A GLORIOUS DAY THAT WILL BE. THEN TO SEE ALL OF OUR LOVE ONES WHO ARE ALREADY THERE WAITING FOR US. IN THE MEANTIME, LET US ALL BE THANKFUL FOR ANOTHER DAY OF LIFE , OUR FAMILIES, ALL THE BEAUTY THAT GOD HAS GIVEN US HERE ON EARTH. THANK YOU ALEISA FOR ALL YOUR BLOGS THAT HAS HELPED ME FACE ONE DAY AT A TIME. JUST GETTING TO SEE NORA AND HER WONDERFUL FAMILY’S PICTURES AND READING ABOUT WHAT HAPPENS DAY TO DAY IS SUCH A BLESSING. WHEN I WAS IN INDIANA, SOMETIMES I WOULD WONDER “HOW IS OUR LITTLE NORA DOING, AND THEN I WOULD FIND MYSELF SENDING UP MANY PRAYERS. SO GLAD HER HEART RATE IS WHERE IT SHOULD BE, AND THAT ALL THE YUSKO FAMILY IS DOING MUCH BETTER. I AM GRADUALLY CATCHING UP ON THE BLOGS THAT I MISSED WHILE I WAS AWAY. LOVE YOU ALL. GOD BLESS.

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