# 308 A journey through the Psalms. Psalm 106.  A shocking story!

In my last Blog I quoted the following from Isaiah:

15 “Can a mother forget the baby at her breast
    and have no compassion on the child she has borne?
Though she may forget,
    I will not forget you!
16 See, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands… 
(Isaiah 49:13-16)

A couple of days later I read the following true story:

“One by one Mum removed the photos from the lounge room wall, wrapped them in newspaper and shoved them into a cardboard box: Lynda, my four-year-old sister dressed in a white frilly dress, Mum and Dad on their wedding day, our grandparents at Christmas dinner, me in a sailor suit just perfect for a 2 year old, and of course more sepia photos of her favourite toy Cocker Spaniels. All removed until the walls were bare. Bare like the rest of the house – memories deleted.

This morning we’d kissed Dad goodbye and stood on the porch as he left for work in his new FE Holden sedan… seconds later a moving van chugged to a halt in front of our driveway. ‘Truck, big truck,’ I yelled. “Come in,’ Mum called to the removalists. ‘Get in the playpen,’ she said to us.

‘Take everything and I’ll pack the boxes.’

The men wearing overalls started hauling everything out to the big black truck. The lounge suite, beds, cupboards, table, chairs, refrigerator… as Lynda and I watched in wonder from our cage.

I started to cry.

‘Shhh,’ Mum said, passing me a bottle of tepid milk. I raised my arms hoping to be picked up, cuddled and kissed, but she was too busy…

‘Here’s an apple for you, Lynda. Eat it, don’t move and look after your brother.’ She returned to packing boxes.

‘Don’t forget the washing machine,’ she yelled. The Simpsons in the laundry. Grab the pegs off the line too. Leave nothing.’

Full to empty in just 4 hours.

A car horn tooted out the front.

‘Grab the playpen. My sister wants it,’ Mum instructed the removers.

She bent down and picked up the spaniels, putting a ball of fluff under each arm and walked out the door.

‘What about the kids?’ a packer asked.

‘He wanted them, he can have them. Shut the door on your way out,’ she called, walking down the steps and into a new life.

The door closed. Lynda and I listened to the car drive away and then the truck after it. We were left with only silence and emptiness. Alone on the bare floor we reached for each other and cried, not daring to wonder if Dad would return from work.”

(“Watching Mummy” by Steve Castely – Quoted in “Writing True Stories” by Patti Miller Allen & Unwin 2017 page 116)

Sadly, it seems the answer is ‘yes’ to the question:

15 “Can a mother forget the baby at her breast
    and have no compassion on the child she has borne?

But, the good news is that God says:

Though she may forget,
    I will not forget you!

In fact, He promises:

16 See, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands…
(Isaiah 49:13-16)

As the NT writer of Hebrews confirms:

 God has said, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.”  (Hebrews 13:5 quoting from Deuteronomy 31:6)

Father, what a wonderful truth to base our lives upon, no matter what the circumstances of our lives. Thank you for such amazing love and grace. Thank you for sending Jesus. Amen.

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