Church community group was underway, those dust bunnies happily forgotten. Friends, of both the big and the little classifications, greeted one another giddily. Coffee ready to be brewed, my appetizers coming together nicely.
Then, a familiar scream from the toy room. How is it that a room full of mothers hear a scream and one goes running, knowing instinctively that pitch and tone?
Appetizers? What appetizers?
I ran to the noise. Little panicked voices could not drown out the loud whirr of our treadmill. And scooping up the two-year old marble-eater, I squealed like the little ones. His God-woven, milky skin was shredded by the man-made machine. Kids tried to explain, to defend themselves, knowing the damage was great. Real Gil and I took turns holding him carefully, doing our best not to disturb the heated patches.
And how our hearts broke at his pain. Mother-guilt lambasted me - I had been so busy with details that I had not folded up the treadmill. The childrens' guilt was great to - knowing what off-limits means.
Doses of medicine, reassurances from medical folks, gentle hands comforted while Curious George did his best to entertain the little wounded fellow, his hiccup-sobs peppering the dialogue periodically.
Somehow, Biblestudy even followed. Small talk and deep talk, parents and friends together drinking the cup of fellowship. It was sweet, and precious. But my heart was downstairs, with something else sweet and precious, more so now that his invincibility was yet again challenged.
Marching around the house this morning in nothing but a diaper, the red patch on his back catches the light. He jumps into the sisters' pillow nest, seemingly recovered from last night's drama.
Mothers are not so fast to recover though. At least not this one.
All I can think is, Never.
Never, ever could I have watched while my only son's back bore red patches for someone else's crimes. Even with modern medicine, his pain is my own.
How could a Father let His Son suffer so? It's either heartless or all-heart. But the crimes were mine, and even marble-eater's, and Real Gil's. And the all-heart allowance of a Father to forsake His Son in the midst of shredded, red patches, this supernatural love is what I was made for.
Gratefulness abounds, floating around our hearts like unswept dust bunnies.
"For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have everlasting life." - John 3:16