Sunday, February 12, 2012

Wet Sheets

He knew he shouldn’t wet the bed at his age. He tried everything to quit. He wouldn’t drink anything after supper. He always went to the bathroom – real hard – before he went to bed. But, those dreams, tricked him. They seemed so real. He would wake up, get up and walk to the bathroom – just like he was supposed to. But, most every morning – when he found the wet sheets – he’d realize he had only been dreaming. And the helplessness he’d feel usually caused the lip to quiver and the dam to break. And, that’s how Ricky started most of his days.  
But, that all changed, in an instant. Family friends stopped by for a visit. They stayed for supper, and by the time they were ready to leave, a good old fashioned Minnesota blizzard had set in. The roads were simply too dangerous – company was going to stay.
When five year old Matthew said, “We’re spending the night! Oh goody, I can sleep with Ricky in his bed,” Ricky felt sick. His lip started to quiver.
Ricky went straight to his room and plopped on his single bed and hugged his pillow. He could smell the fresh clean sheets. Clean because he had just washed them that morning and the morning before that and the morning before....
He had learned to do his own laundry.  It had become an unpleasant morning chore. Sometimes he’d wake up long before everyone else and sneak down to the basement and wash his wetted sheets and clothes, and then he’d sneak back upstairs and make his bed and put on clean pajamas. Then he’d lay in bed and watch the night turn to day. He’d pretend he was waking up after a good night’s sleep – dry. He longed to sleep through the night and wake up dry – especially tonight.
His lip quivered and the river flowed – from his eyes. The words from the kids at school echoed in his head; cry baby’s quiver – here comes the river. Ricky rolled over on his back, hugged the batman pillow over his face, and wept…What am I gonna do? I’ll just stay awake all night. I won’t allow myself to go to sleep… God don’t let me fall asleep. This kid is younger than me and he probably doesn’t wet the bed. What will the kids at school say…cry baby’s quiver here comes TWO rivers… and one’s yellow. Laughter like a million voices pulsed in Ricky’s head. God help me…Ricky groaned.
A soft knock at the door jolted Ricky back to the present. Using his pillow he quickly wiped away the tears and jumped up.  He pretended to be looking out the window. The door slowly opened.
“What’s up Bud?” His Dad whispered and wiped a stray tear from the boys’ cheek.  
Ricky held his breath and looked at the door expecting, the kid, to walk in.
“He’s still downstairs.” His Dad comforted. 
Ricky’s lip started its quiver and he quickly looked out the window to hide the water works welling.
His Dad knelt on one knee and looked out the window, too. “A little nervous?” He said it like it was no big deal. Not like it was the end of the world – which it was.
Ricky sucked in a breath and whispered, “Yeah”
Then his Dad whispered, “If you don’t want to…just ask God.” Then, he waited.
Ricky, shifted his weight back and forth, starred out the window, wiped his nose with his sleeve and whispered out the window toward the wind. “Dear…” His voice broke and bottom lip took off on a beat of its own. He spun around into his father’s arms and wept, “Please God, make me stop wetting the bed.”
An eternity passed. And Ricky’s Dad stood. And spoken as a matter-of-fact he said, “OK, now you won’t…anymore.” He patted Ricky’s head, turned and walked out the door. End of story.  
Ricky tilted his head and stared at the space where his Dad just stood. How does he know? How can he be so sure? He’d never known his Dad to lie. So, hmmm – it must be true.
It was. From that day to this, never again did Ricky wet the bed.
This story is true. I know – because it’s about me. And it’s about you, too. We all have stains.
I’m glad – real glad – I still don’t wet the bed, but there’s more for me to be thankful for than just that.
I realized that day; God cares for me – even little bitty boy stuff.  
I also found out, time and again, from that day to this:

When I have a test,
I give it to God – then rest.
He takes a hold of the reign;
Then He gives it back again.
But, it comes back only,
As a testimony.
~

7 comments:

Linda Maynard said...

Doug...
You are writing a book...right???
Your writing is like an arrow deep into the heart. You plumb the depths of hidden places in all of us, who want to be found, while simultaneously want to stay hidden.
You have been given a gift of beauty and expression
Linda Maynard

Jennifer @ GettingDownWithJesus.com said...

What a beautiful story on the power of prayer and on what it means to be a good, Godly parent. Thank you for this, Doug.

caryjo said...

So many ways have walked through this principle and reality. A real "wet" challenge with my son... and my husband says it was that way with him, too. But loving, caring parents are the ones who can turn it [and everything else of that seriosity] over to the hand of our Father God.

You are such a straightforward sharing server. And blessing us.

Doug Spurling said...

Linda, thank-you! I'm writing... words. If they'll turn into a book? God knows. Your encouragement is such a blessing.

Jennifer, coming from you -- a beautiful writer that exemplifies good and Godly character as a parent -- that means a lot. I appreciate you.

Caryjo -- Thank you for your consistent encouragement. It's an honor to be your friend (even if only - online).

I pray for all ya'll. (that's some southern talk I picked up somewhere)

Joyce Lighari said...

I'm sure glad you joined us Doug - what a great way to end or begin the week depending on how you look at it... this was a great post - filled with warmth and the reminder that God is in the details of our lives.

Doug Spurling said...

Joyce, thank you for your kindness, and I'm honored to be able to be a part of this and glad God is in all the details of it.

A Joyful Noise said...

I am thankful that God answers prayer. The Dad probably knew God answered prayer for him and could also answer for his son.
God bless those who have overcome by the Power of prayer.