Tuesday, October 25, 2011

The Longest Hour at McDonald's

McDonald's.  A plastic playground crawling in germs and swimming in carbs.  The originator of happiness in a cardboard box and plastic toys that are neatly placed in the circular file as soon as you hit the door.

It's also the place I spent an hour on my knees completely relying on the Lord on Saturday.

Let me back up. Our family is enjoying watching 5 year old soccer Saturday morning.  My hubby's phone rings and he answers it.

"Mr. Carbajal?  This is Captain E calling from Alaska.  Your son, Jade, is in ICU."

"Excuse me?  Who is this?  What did you say?"

"Your son has some broken bones around his right eye.  He is in ICU and we are unaware of the severity of his injuries.  Depending on the severity, the Army will fly you and his mom to Alaska.  I'll call you in an hour."

"Huh?! OK, I'll wait to hear from you."

I got the gist of the entire conversation as I watched my husband's coffee-colored, sweet face drain of color.  He plunked himself down on the grass and repeated all he had been told.  My questions flew out of my mouth faster than he could process them. 

Even in the midst of potential heartache, the kids' stomachs were rumbling.  So where do we go?  The loudest, most crowded, most obnoxious place on the face of this God created planet - McDonald's.

We woodenly distributed out nuggets and fries, smiling somewhat blankly at child requests of "more, please!".  I checked my watch praying for the minutes to fly by, seconds agonizingly slow.  I tried to engage Mario in conversation, tried to get his feelings, gauge his stress level.

I couldn't take another moment perched on the edge of the sticky plastic seat.  I marched to the not-so-clean public restroom and hit my knees.  I do admit to checking the floor first.  It may be shallow but have you ever seen the floor?!  Anyway . . .

I spent that time praying, crying out to my Sweet Lord.  Begging Him to protect my son's life, his health, his vision, his brain.  Asking for a "it looks worse than it really is" prognosis.  Asking Him to provide the doctors with wisdom regarding his medical treatment.  Praying for a swift recovery.

After all that, I was honestly able to ask the Lord to give each of us a peace that surpasses all understanding, that we would be able to glorify Him in every single moment, and that we would not only accept His will for the situation but that we would be able to inscribe His will upon our hearts.

I walked out of the Ladies' room a different person, a different heart.  I have never had to rely on the Lord in that way.  I'm 3,000 miles away from my adult son lying alone in an ICU room with unknown injuries.  I'm waiting, hanging by my fingernails to hear from Captain E.

I am utterly helpless. 

Nothing to plan or control.  Nothing to do.  Nothing to say.

Just wait.  Wait.  And wait.

The waiting finally ends.  He is OK!  No permanent damage.  No surgery needed. 

Thank you God.  Thank you for his health and life.  Thank you for Your care and infinite concern for each of us.  Thank you for the opportunity to REALLY rely on You with my whole heart surrendered. 

Thank YOU for meeting me there in that sticky, icky Ladies' Room.

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.  Philippians 4:6-7 


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