A heart’s murmur

Categorized as  heart murmurs,  letting go, God's voice

One by one, they fell.  One by one, ever so slowly, they began to recover.  All, that is, except for Boy Three whose fever had subsided, but whose spark was still gone.

I nearly sent him to school on Monday last.  Sitting at the coffee shop preparing to write the column, I felt a hesitation, a check in my spirit.  And so I called home.  “Tell him,” I said to his father, “to stay there.  I’m taking him in.”

In one of those odd, spur-of-the-moment decisions that appear at once to be coincidence, I took him right uptown to a clinic just around the corner from us instead of to our normal family doctor.  She looked in his ears, listened to him breathe, and looked in his throat.

Sure enough.  “Bronchitis,” she said.  Then, “Otitis and sinusitis,” all words I’d been half expecting to hear.

I noted, as she listened to his heart, that she was taking her time.  What, I wondered, was she hearing?

Then came words I wasn’t expecting.  Words like “heart murmur, grade 2-3.”  Words like “aortic valve area” and “pediatric cardiologist.”  And words like “loud” and “turbulent blood flow,” all phrases and terms that this cardiology transcriptionist types all the time…for other people.

I told her then about my family’s extensive history of heart disease.  Her face turned grave when I told her four letters, abbreviations of a syndrome that multiple family members had been diagnosed with and which had proven fatal for one.

She called me at home yesterday.  “I would love to be proven wrong,” she said, “but I’ve scheduled an appointment with a top-line cardiologist from Riley Children’s Hospital in Indy.  I just have a gut feeling…”

This morning, with this unexpected news heavy on my heart, I remembered the whisper of the Spirit yesterday, driving along in the predawn darkness before the doctor’s phone call.

“Am I God of the universe?” He’d said.

“Yes, You are.”

“Am I omnipotent?”

“Yes, You are.”

“Is My arm shortened, that it cannot save?”

“No.  It’s not.”

“Am I omniscient?”

“Yes, Lord.  You know everything.”

“Am I omnipresent?”

“Yes.  You are everywhere present, always with me.”

“Then can you let Me be God?”


“Yes.  I will let You be God,” my heart murmured back.  And opening my hands, I let go.

Moment by moment, throughout the day I continue to listen for the murmurs of His heart, and He gently receives the murmurs of mine.  Breathe in, breathe out.  Letting go, holding on.  Sweet, sweet grace.

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