I am 37 weeks swollen with child and as I put together salad for lunch, sprinkle dressing, cut soft French bread, I am overcome by the holy ground I stand on. Right here in my messy kitchen, between the red toaster and the red bread box. I set down the butter knife and I can hear the chorus of how much Jesus loves me playing. Playing loud and here and just for me.
How am I worthy of this love?
The girl who grew up believing she was nothing apart for her ability to reproduce, so wounded by that gospel that she swore off marriage and children, now standing here beloved and pregnant and in a pool of grace as warm as the winter sunshine pouring through the window.
How did He do it?
How did He take the most broken bits of my childhood and all their jagged edges and fit them together in this tremendous testimony to His patient love. Somehow He soldered them into a stained glass whole and made my story beautiful. The motherless daughter now co-creates a girl child with the God who never demanded it from her, who only offered it as free gift.
I am His art. And with Him we make art together. Living art. Life. And only because of His grace.
Zoe Grace. Life and Grace.
This is my testimony.
On the 18th anniversary of my mother’s death, not knowing it was a daughter growing inside of me, He knew. And so He spoke her name before we had even named her, as I wrote:
Months later we discover who she is and with that comes her name. Zoe. The unexpected life He gave us. And I feel her kicking inside of me now, 30 weeks later. And I am a living altar of remembrance to what He has done.
When Jacob awoke from his sleep, he thought, “Surely the LORD is in this place, and I was not aware of it.” He called that place Bethel [House of God]. Genesis 28:16-19.
Life and Grace.
Even when I was not aware of it.