Speechless

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Have you ever been so awestruck that no words could find their way out of your mouth? Maybe you have had a time when you were so confused you did not know what to do or say?  I communicate for a living and it’s a rare day when I am at a loss for words. In fact, when I find myself in hard situations I often over talk, becoming a rambling lunatic even. You see, that’s one of the crazy things about following Jesus. When I saw something that only God could do, I was struck speechless.

I think of the apostle Paul (at the time named Saul) when Jesus appears to him on the road to Damascus. Jesus begins to ask Saul why he is persecuting the Christians. The men around him could hear Jesus voice but could not see him, Acts 9: 7 says:

“The men traveling with Saul stood there speechless; they heard the sound but did not see anyone.”

Jesus often will do things in our lives that will not only impact us, but also leave us, and others, speechless.

It was a Friday evening, Olivia was still in the rehab hospital. She was progressing at a miraculous rate, yet had so far to go. She was not standing or walking on her own yet but improving physically beyond doctors’ expectations. Amber and I had developed a system by now. I spent Friday night and Saturday with Olivia at the rehab hospital. Amber would relieve me Saturday night, so I could go preach on Sunday, then I would come back in on Monday for a day or two. On this particular occasion I asked Olivia on Friday evening, what are your goals for Monday? We would do this and write them on a whiteboard in her room.

She said, “Dad, I am going to put my glove on and get in my catcher’s stance.”

Talk about speechless! I thought to myself, “No way.” Much of Olivia’s life she has set huge goals and accomplished them, but this was over the top. She could not hold a pencil in her left hand without dropping or fumbling it. Putting on her catcher’s glove, would be impossible.

All day Saturday and much of Sunday she worked double and triple time on her therapies. I remember Amber texting me on Sunday saying that Liv had a new determination. Amber was having a hard time even keeping up with the schedule Liv was trying to hold.

Monday morning came and her physical therapist Miss Brenda came in the room, ready to take Liv through therapy. “What are we working on today Olivia?” Without pause Liv replied, “I am going to put this glove on and get in my stance.”

Miss Brenda stood with a blank stare, a look I will never forget. She glanced at me as if to get my approval or to validate that I heard the same thing she did. Brenda shrugged and said all righty Liv, let’s give it a shot.

We helped Olivia out of bed, handed her the catcher’s mitt and she immediately began working to get her weakened left hand into it. As if her hand were created for that glove, she got it on and began to sink right into the catcher’s position with no help. Shocked, Brenda put her arms in position to support her, but Liv crouched like she had done thousands of times before the accident. It was shaky, slow and a bit ugly, but at the same time, it was the most beautiful thing I had ever seen. My daughter, working with the healing hand of Jesus, left me completely speechless. I just stood, stared and felt the tears pour down my cheeks.

What do we ever say to a savior, a God that helps us in our greatest time of need? How could we articulate the depth of appreciation when we remotely fathom the incredible grace, mercy and power of our God? Sometimes we just can’t. We stand speechless with a humbled heart and offer him our worship. A silent mouth, overwhelmed with a full heart of gratitude, eager to tell the world what an amazing God we serve.

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