By Sarah Langness
I always wondered what heartburn was like.
Back in the day, when I lived in a house with a TV that did more than take up space and commercials for Zantac or Prilosec came one, I was struck with curiosity. Wonder what that feels like.
And now, I know. Oh boy, do I know.
The first time I ever experienced heartburn was during my pregnancy with Ezekiel. I’d get heartburn from any and everything. Thankfully, though, it was decently contained to the evening hours, particularly when I’d lie down for the night. Nothing some Tums couldn’t handle.
Pregnancy ended, baby boy born (with a full head of hair), and there goes the heartburn.
Until two years later.
Except this time, my heartburn isn’t as nicely contained to a certain time of day. Oh, I still get heartburn from any and everything. In fact, it rears its fiery head after my breakfast bowl of Cheerios and a banana. And Tums alone can’t fight it.
Let’s just say, I’m hoping Baby Sister has as much – if not more – hair than her older brother did at birth.*
A couple of weeks ago, I went to bed with heartburn like any other night. But, since I had popped a couple of Tums, I didn’t think much of it and figured the heartburn would dissipate in a few moments time. Except it didn’t. I woke up choking on my own bile from the acid reflux . . . and spent the next hour kneeling by the toilet as wave after wave came.
After that incident, I knew I had to check with my doctor in regards to what more I could take besides Tums and ice cream. But even after learning which medications I could take, it took me about a week and a half to go buy some. (And actually, I wasn’t even the one who bought it; my husband did.) Because after my midnight wake-up, the heartburn didn’t seem as intense; it didn’t seem to warrant more than Tums. (Or ice cream.) Until this last Saturday night – when I lay awake wishing I had something on hand I could take besides Tums; because Tums wasn’t cutting it when I woke up every hour.
As I lay awake Saturday night, readjusting pillows to elevate my head more, I shook my head at my folly. Why did I think that this wouldn’t happen again? Why did I seem content sticking with the status quo, when I knew that in the worst moments, the status quo wouldn’t suffice?
And then I thought how often I do the same thing with Scripture.
A certain chapter or book doesn’t seem to speak to me, to where I am on that particular day or season. So I neglect the Word. Or I just glaze. Never suspecting that what I read today could be just the words I need a month from now, half a year from now, or even three years from now.
“The Word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.” -
Hebrews 4:12 NASB (emphasis mine)
So right now, what I’m reading in Ecclesiastes isn’t exactly the “breath of fresh air” that I may need. It might not seem to be teaching me something earth-shatteringly amazing or leave a particular conviction upon my heart. But if I let the Word take root, it’ll work. I don’t exactly know when something from such a lamentful book will be just what I need for that day, but the Lord gave us Ecclesiastes for a reason.
And so, I’m going to keep reading. Not just Ecclesiastes, but through the Word. Because I don’t want to be stuck without it, desperately wishing I knew the promises within.
I’ve been there, and it’s no fun.
“Your word I have treasured in my heart . . .” – Psalm 119:11, NASB (emphasis mine)
*An old wives tale claims that heartburn during pregnancy means your baby will have hair.