When my head hits the pillow at night, the regrets roll past like a movie I've seen over and over again.
The encouraging e-mail I meant to send but forgot.
The love I kept instead of giving away.
The walls I built to self-protect.
The moment that is forever lost.
Something I thought I had sown, something I thought was safe, but was taken away by the cares of the world.
As the movie spins around the reels in my mind, I hear Him say, "Shh. Go to sleep. Rest. I have mercies for every frame of the movie. My mercies are new every day."
I rocked my babies to sleep. I rocked them when they were too old to be rocked. I held them close as they fought sleep. I would take my hands and with the gentlest mother-stroke I could find in me, I'd brush their little eyelids down. They needed help to say good-bye to the day.
Most nights, I need help to say good-bye to the day.
I sang to those babies I held. Now, in the dark night, I sing to The One who holds me.
I reach under my pillow, where my prayer shawl has spent the day. I take it out and hold it close. The shawl itself isn't sacred. It isn't holy. It's a pile of yarn that was knitted by holy and sacred hands. Holy and sacred because each stitch was knitted in prayer. Knitted, in prayer, for an unknown woman with unknown needs.
Knitted in prayer, with faith, that God would know.
My prayer shawl reminds me that God is nearer than the dark and that He hears every prayer I offer. He hears the prayers that are whispered, as well as the prayers that are silent. Silent, because the longing or the fear, can't be described.
With my shawl in my hand, and the movie of regrets turned off, He takes His gentle hands, the ones with the scars, and brushes my eyes closed. I hear Him whisper, "Sleep. Rest. I have new mercies waiting for you when the morning comes."
Through the Lord's mercies we are not consumed,
Because His compassions fail not.