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Posts Tagged ‘grieving’

I never wanted to have a blog about grief and loss. I suppose no one does. Those who have stumbled along the rocky road of traumatic loss understand how a little grace unfolding amidst the searing pain is a very, very big thing. Thank you, Jackie of www.swervingforbutterflies.com for being grace’s deliverer by nominating For Those Who Weep by a “Lovely Blog Award.” 

On most days, grief feels anything but lovely. Today, Jackie changed that. Thank you, dear one. No doubt you are a kind and beautiful soul. Butterflies should swerve for you.

I’m not good at following rules, but I will gladly do so here in order to accept this humble honor = linking this post back to the blogger who nominated me with thanks, listing 7 things about myself, recommending 15 other blogs for this award, informing them of their nomination, and posting the above logo on my blog.

7 Things About Me (in random order)

1. I hate disclosing stuff about myself.

2. I am in love with God…a sacred Romance like no other.

3. I miss my little brother every. single. day.

4. There is nothing better than being barefoot.

5. I will sit for hours to refine a photograph.

6. My yet unfulfilled dream – a publishing contract.

7. My 7 nieces and nephews are rare and priceless treasures.

For their creativity, courage, and honest expression of travail, I’d like to recognize the following bloggers as “lovely”…

www.joshua-mom.blogspot.com

http://onewomansperspective02.wordpress.com/

http://www.griefreflection.com/

http://www.widowschristianplace.com

http://www.thegriefexperience.wordpress.com

http://www.teamemmett.com/blog

http://www.thinkingaboutsuicide.com

http://www.holdingourhope.blogspot.com

http://www.mymauloa.blogspot.com

http://www.ourprecioushope.blogspot.com

http://www.brightmomentsduringdarktimes.blogspot.com

http://www.hopesjourneyblog.blogspot.com

http://www.blessedbycreativejoy.blogspot.com

http://www.avazoeg.blogspot.com

http://www.walkingthevalley.blogspot.com

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After you have suffered for a little while…

The God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ…

Will Himself perfect, confirm, strengthen and establish you…

To Him be dominion forever and ever. Amen.

1 Peter 5:10 NASB

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When a day that has always marked his life…

Beckons to remind me only of his death.

When the hole in my heart…

Threatens to swallow me whole.

I grab a firm hold of my grief, before my grief grabs hold of me…

And, determine to do what I’ve always done on this day.

Because in surrendering the sorrow of his absence…

I celebrate the sanctity of His presence…

And, somehow…

Someway…

It is I who receives a gift.

“…that I may gain Christ.”

Philippians 3:8

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I always wanted to be the chick singer in a band. My first stab at stardom took place in the 2nd grade. I really should have known better than to form a rock band with the most rambunctious boy on our block. We called ourselves The Super II (using Roman numerals in our name somehow added an air of cool-ness). Unfortunately, we never landed a recording contract, or even a gig for that matter. I blamed my partner for the band’s difficult and very public break-up when he put a hole through the skin of my snare drum during our first front porch rehearsal. It was a shame too, because we had some serious potential.

While I’ve spent the better part of more than 40-something years still dreaming about sound boards and stage lights, I guess I’ve been booked for the one gig NOBODY wants. I find myself cast front and center on the stage called grief, playing out what looks like just another tragic drama. But, deep in the recesses of my shattered soul I know that I know that I know this one thing:

While I do not like the way this particular scene has played out…

I am in the midst of a Greater Story whose triumphant end I know.

“Let them who sow with tears, reap with rapture.”

Psalm 126:5 The Septuagint

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What’s a woman to do when…

The basket on the table contains the ashes of her brother…

 And sorrow comes parading…

To bid one last goodbye.

When she weeps as those who loved him…

Reach in for one last touch.

When words are few…

But, tears are many.

Just what IS a woman to do?

A woman must surrender at sunset…

 

And exchange his ashes…

for His beauty.

“To all who mourn in Israel, he will give a crown of beauty for ashes, a joyous blessing instead of mourning, festive praise instead of despair.”

“In their righteousness, they will be like great oaks that the Lord has planted for his own glory.” Isaiah 61:3

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I wish the sun would stop setting.

If, even for just a moment, God would stop it from going down…

Right here in this very place.

Image

But, the sun will set…

And, tomorrow’s ache will come long before I’ve dealt with today’s.

Because grief waits for no one.

But, then again…

Neither does love. 

“Certainly the faithful love of the Lord hasn’t ended; certainly God’s compassion isn’t through! They are renewed every morning.” Lamentations 3:22-23a

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My life passage is Isaiah 61:1-4.

Powerful? Yes. Purposeful? Absolutely. But, on nights like this…when grief grabs at my gut and anguish atrophies every muscle of faith I can muster…I don’t care about power or purpose. 

I just want God to pick out a different life passage for me.

Please.

Why is it that in order to bind up the brokenhearted, I must know what it means to have my own heart shattered?

And, to comfort all who mourn, I must know what it means to bawl my guts out on the bedroom floor?

And, to restore the places long devastated, I must know what it means to sit among the ruins?

Because, in order for me to fully proclaim these things…

I must also fully bear them.

“What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all—how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things?” (Romans 8:31-32)

“Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? As it is written: ‘For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.’ ” (Romans 8:35-36)

“No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 8:37-39)

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“The people who survived the sword, found grace in the wilderness…” Jeremiah 31:2 NKJV

What does grace in the wilderness look like? It looks like…

A morning message that stirs the Spirit.

A gift from someone who has walked THIS road.

 A symbol to hold out Hope’s light.

A word to keep carrying on.

A card in the mail from a friend.

A text of tenderness and blessing.

What does grace in the wilderness look like?

The shedding of a brand new light…on a very old promise.

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Some say, “GRIEF IS LIFE’S GREATEST TEACHER.”

But, I’m not far enough along to agree or pass judgment…

My heart-wound raw and gaping.

Because frankly…if I had my way in the world tonight…

I’d alter the anguish of my journey. 

I’d pick a different teacher.

Because on night’s like this…

When all seems lost and dim…

Grief burns a hole through the center of my chest and I want an easier way.

I want to turn back time and cut death off at the pass.

Until I cease my anxious striving…and sit alone with God in the silence of my soul…

Then and only then, do I hear Him faintly whisper,

“You didn’t pick grief.”

“Grief picked you.”

“Just as it is written, ‘FOR YOUR SAKE WE ARE BEING PUT TO DEATH ALL DAY LONG; WE WERE CONSIDERED AS SHEEP TO BE SLAUGHTERED.’ But in all these things we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us.” Romans 8:36-37

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