Today is Veil Eden’s due date and yet I have been privileged to rock her in my arms for the last 2 weeks, breathing that newborn smell in and quite honestly having to tell myself it is real, she is really in my arms and not inside of my body…I have asked myself a couple times if I cherished the gift of pregnancy. In the moments that I am trying to keep my eyes open during a middle of the night feeding or when I quickly grab her from the swing because my soul longs to be reunited with the soul I grew inside of me for 38 wks. It seems like her pregnancy went at an unreal pace and yet I know the line of insanity I was walking the last few wks of her pregnancy feeling as though it was never going to end.Early in this pregnancy, before we knew what we were going to have, I found myself lying in bed one morning, sicker than anything, waiting for my family to wake, I was praying, laying my heavy heart at my Abba Father’s feet. I was grieving again. It wasn’t the pregnancy hormones, it was something I was facing and desperately wished my mentor was still here on this earth so we could figure out the necessary steps to get through it. I have heard charismatic evangelical Christians talk openly and sometimes flippantly about visions or dreams the Lord has given them and YES, have rolled my eyes at them. I am too black and white to handle that much gray people. But I also have to admit that I have in fact experienced the Lord speaking to me through a dream 2x in my life…the events that I was forewarned about in the dreams came to life and as I went through them I felt my spirit check itself as it experienced déjà vu.
That morning, as the warm tears streamed down my face onto my pillow, as my body tried to conceal the rocking of the bed to wake Richard, I found myself receiving a vision of something that I know was divinely delivered to my breaking heart.
The questions, the hurt that I was asking God to reveal himself in was met with the most peaceful image I have seen to this day.
I didn’t even question if it was true, instead the heaviness that was pressing my heart, feeling as though I couldn’t get up, was lifted as I accepted what the Lord told me.
After getting showered and dressed that morning I kept hearing the word “Veil”. What a strange word to hear, I know. Yet when I digested what I had seen that morning it began to make sense. I shared with Richard the name that was on my heart and told him it would be a great contender for a girl’s name. Deep inside as I said the name out loud I realized there was no chance that the life tenderly being knitted inside of me was a boy, even though my men desperately were wishing for a boy.
Some have asked why Veil Eden? As we have gotten out a few times in the community this last week we have ran into people who don’t attend our church and they have asked why or made comments like “wow, that is a strong or interesting name”. If you attend our church then you most likely heard my pastor explain the meaning behind her name. I had someone recently tell me that when he was sharing with the congregation her name, they had goosebumps and it was evident to them the big plans that God has for our sweet #5.
Veil comes from the Old Testament. In Exodus 34 where Moses veiled his face after being in the presence of the most high Lord almighty. He covered/veiled his face because he didn’t want them to see the glory fading as it did, but also because it kind of freaked the Israelites out when some of them saw his face shining. Moses was in the presence of the most high because he was talking with the Lord, learning a new law for God’s chosen people to follow, laws that would help them separate themselves from the rest, set them apart, and consecrate them to him. The laws were good, they were perfect, and they brought his people to communion with their maker when they followed them with sincere hearts. But as human’s do, they messed it up along the way. It became all about burnt offerings, sacrifices, things that could be done without reverence and no longer about hearts being purified.
Fast forward to years and years and years later and we have the Son of God on the earth, God incarnate, coming and telling mankind that he didn’t come to abolish the law but instead fulfill every detail (Matthew 5:17,18)
One of the most powerful, earth shattering images, event that shaped my heart of worship was when I finally understood the significance of the Veil being torn in the Holy of Holies (a place only a high priest could enter) when Christ was crucified (Matthew 27:51). I recall teaching on this topic in church a few years ago when I introduced the song “shekinah glory”. This event is how we are promised redemption, reconciliation and more importantly a new covenant that was given to us. No longer are we separated from God, no longer are we forever banished from the garden of Eden (Heaven), no longer does Man have to go to God for us, we can go to God FREELY and we now have the promise of entering our eternal rest because of Christ’s sacrifice. He is now our High Priest, he now advocates for us and made a way for us to be made right in God’s eyes.
Whew…did you know you were signing up for a mini sermon when you clicked on this link?!? Sorry, one of my giftings is teaching, if you attend church with me, you would be shaking your head right now, knowing I can’t help but do it each worship service I lead…
I feel like I would be doing a disservice to you all if I didn’t take a little time to explain why this little soul has been given the name she has.
Back to that vision I was given, I knew when it was confirmed it was a little girl growing inside of me that it would be what I painted on her belly cast. As I have done with all my other babies, thank you Jonny and Frances for encouraging me to start the tradition 8 yrs ago, I decided the vision would leave my mind and heart and find itself on the form that reminded me of this precious baby girl.
After finally feeling like I had the clarity and strength to paint the cast, I set up my art station and got to work last night on it. The hubby was busy dealing with Mr. bear and our hanging salmon in the smoke house and Veil Eden was wrapped up in her favorite purple blanket while I got lost in my thoughts.
All of a sudden I was smack dab in my bedroom, the night I received the call that my mentor had gained his inheritance and no longer was here on earth. I remember hearing the other person on the phone fight to get the words out in-between the heavy sobs of grief. I remember reaching out for the stacked tubs against the wall waiting for me to go through the next size of clothes baby Ya’el needed, I had caught myself, my knees had buckled and the ground beneath me felt as though it was fading. The colors, the soft carpet under my toes, the black night sky that caught my eyes fighting the tears…all that…it was as though I was going through it all over again.Ezzy, my little artist who is going to go places with her crazy talent analyzed my belly cast this morning. Her first question, “why is there a lion and a lamb laying by each other? Lions eat lambs”.“Because they are in the garden of Eden, Ez” (daddy). Her eyes scanned over to the other side of the tree and without missing a beat she said, “oh, and there is Ken”.
Yes baby girl, there is Ken.
It has been 1 year and 5 months since we last spoke. How quickly that time has passed it seems as I pair them against the fact that you haven’t been in my life and my family’s lives since then. If you were still here, that wouldn’t even be a possibility, being present, being involved in our day to day things was something that you ran into, something a lot of people get overwhelmed in.
Can I tell you that you rarely are a fading thought in my heart, because you loved my family and strove to be part of it, there are too many parts of my day that bring your lack of presence in the forefront. I still struggle when people talk about you, when your name is mentioned by a church go-er, when I see a picture of you on fb as people from time to time share their grief with the rest of us. You are not forgotten, instead your absence only drives me farther into God’s open arms as I see how the promise you are living out is my promise too.
So that taxidermy thing that you told me Richard would get tired of and I just had to “wait it out”, I would like to tell you that you were wrong my friend. Richard has now started his own business, has clients and find myself telling him, please don’t’ show me the early stages of projects, only when they are nicely tanned and no longer smell like death. The business, its real, he has a shop set up in our basement, business cards made and new clients calling his phone…it’s crazy…
My little man, the one that you told me caught the bug, well you were right this time. Cayden has decided to forgo sports this fall in hopes to run an efficient trap line and work on building his savings account. He loves God’s handiwork, he would live outside if I let him and most of all he is more Alaskan than most little boys his age. How I wish you could have sat across him as he explained to your son how to set and pull a halibut skate, all with telling him specifically where to go and set it.
Ezzy, well, she had a rough spring, it was touch and go. I know had you been here, you would have been praying over her, you would have arranged for pillars in our church to come and lay hands and anoint her with oil. You would have challenged me to keep the faith, to not get lost in the what ifs. You would have smiled through the corner of your mouth when she surprised us all and beat the odds when she avoided a hospitalization after having a lung exasperation.
Kyrene, the one who’s fire put a smile on your face as we dealt with her nonstop outburst…she hasn’t changed. I know that you would find comfort in the fact we haven’t broken her spirit. We call her squirt from time to time, mainly because we don’t want her to lose a piece of who you saw her to be.
Ya’el, it makes me sad you don’t know her. She goes over and sits with your family in church, as if she knows they are her family too. She is fun, like really fun. She is like her daddy, but she is also so incredibly sweet. Her big brown eyes and chubby cheeks, they are her secret weapon. I know you would love her quick wit and how she feeds off of other people.
Veil Eden, her name, it’s in honor of you, honor of the God you are in the midst of. When I was at one of my weakest moments of doubting God’s faithfulness, he showed me you, he showed you in the garden, and he showed me that he had you right where you are supposed to be. Does it make it hurt less that I know where you are? I don’t know, it seems to change with each day and honestly the more I spend time in his word, seeing the weak spots of my Faith.
Ken, I look forward to sitting under that tree with you one day. Having you bring me to the King, worshipping in his throne room with you and all the other saints, meeting the babies I lost before I met them, knowing you have found them and have told them all about the family they have here on earth. My brother, you are missed and loved dearly by my family, may we find ways to carry on your legacy and not be ashamed of the Gospel that you so fiercely fought to share with everyone