For my husband

“I love you, Sara.”

It is barely a whisper; he is barely awake.

His hand finds mine in the darkness. No firm grip this time, just a soft touch. A comfort – a quiet, sure presence. The unspoken: “I am here and will always be here.”

The words come so softly, so unexpectedly. We had said our good nights. We had said our prayer together. We had rolled to our separate continents in this ocean of a king size bed.

For a moment, just a moment – the old thrill was there. I barely recognized it, for it seems a lifetime ago now. The thrill I felt upon first hearing those words cross his lips – it surfaced for a moment somewhere in the recesses of my mind.

But that was just a wave – the briefest of sensations – replaced by the stronger undercurrent.

This now is love.

We have been knitted together by a supernatural force. This bond now, this bond has been forged in the fires of immense struggle; it has been tested and found worthy, held together by a divine hand.

“I am still here,” his hand tells me.

After months of grief, months of illness, months lacking physical intimacy, months of my fatigue, months of my ever-changing physical appearance, months of handling extreme pressure at work only to come home to two boys who need time with their father.

“I love you, Sara.”

The words sink deep, deep down, take root, and expand, filling me to overflowing.

Words I doubted I would ever hear in the lonely days of adult singlehood.
Words I doubted I these earthly ears would ever hear again after receiving news that I had advanced cancer, as my brain convinced me I would die that day.
Words we clung to as we tried not to drown in a sea of tears for our baby girl.

Oh my husband, what has this been like for you? You who have faced terrible grief, terrible fears, immense physical and emotional stress. Your baby girl ripped from your arms and then watching, powerless, as cancer threatens to steal your wife as well, leaving you with mountains of grief and two boys who desperately need you only to be strong. Watching as soul after soul surrounds me, comforts me, loves me. You have carried on, shouldering burden after burden on your own, broad, strong shoulders. Without complaint, without self-pity, without faltering.

Surely you are not fully human. Surely in your innermost being you are part rock – Granite? Quartz? No, diamond, I think. Yes, solid, sure, brilliant diamond. Not rock. A precious gem.

This is love.

And so HE whispers to me, in those still moments just before sleep,
“I love you, Sara.”
A comfort – a quiet, sure presence. The unspoken: I am here and will always be here.

My Father, the great lover of my soul –
I bow to praise. I weep tears of overwhelming gratitude for this man. Who am I, that I should be linked to one such as this? I praise you for opening his heart to find a place for me there; that he chose to be made one, ONE, with me. I praise you for holding us together, through this dark valley that threatened and threatens still to rip us to shreds. Surely this is a mountain you have moved by your immeasurably great power.

I bow to praise. I bow to praise you for King Jesus. I weep tears of overwhelming gratitude for this man. Who am I, that I should be linked to one such as HE? I praise you that His heart has a place for me; that He chose to make his home with me, in my heart and in my very being; even closer than my husband and I can ever be. Oh, who am I, dear Lord? I praise you for holding us together, my Jesus and me, through this dark valley. What joy to know, that nothing – NOTHING – can snatch me from His hand, Your hand. Nothing can separate me from your love.

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