Some Christians have faces so long that they could eat oatmeal out of the end of a gas pipe. (Don’t get mad at me. This quote is attributed to evangelist Billy Sunday). That’s how I felt last week and I don’t even like oatmeal!
When our last breath is close, what will you say? What will you regret? Experts say that our remorse tends to include the following:
- I wish I’d been happier, now that I know that happiness is a choice.
- I wish I’d taken more time to ‘smell the roses.’ Worked less and loved family more.
- I wish I’d lived the life God wanted for me instead of the life others expected of me.
- I wished I’d said what I meant and meant what I said.
- I wish I hadn’t lost touch with so many people.
This verse sums it up.
Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth. (3 John 1:2, KJV)
Prayer – Lord, help us to make better choices before its too late… Amen
There are days when we wonder how we can rejoice. March 22 was my husband’s birthday and I find it to still be a touchy kind of day. Yet in spite of things like death, loneliness and despair, God tells us to:
Consider it wholly joyful, my brethren, whenever you are enveloped in or encounter trials of any sort or fall into various temptations.
Be assured and understand that the trial and proving of your faith bring out endurance and steadfastness and patience.
But let endurance and steadfastness and patience have full play and do a thorough work, so that you may be [people] perfectly and fully developed [with no defects], lacking in nothing. (James 1:2-4, Amp)
Am I there yet? Absolutely not and maybe not ever. Still I strive toward the goal.
I press on toward the goal to win the [supreme and heavenly] prize to which God in Christ Jesus is calling us upward. (Philippians 3:14, AMP)
Prayer – Lord, let every day, every circumstance, bring us ever so slightly toward what you call us to be. Amen
I just read some articles about dementia. Guess what; the sufferers described how their friendships had changed.
“It’s not catching,” said one man. “I can still hold a conversation, but my friends don’t come around like they used to.”
I had the very same experience when my husband died. People who we’d known for decades, simply disappeared. No cards, no letters no phone calls, no contact at all.
What is friendship anyway?
The dictionary defines it this way: Friendship is a mutual feeling of trust and affection and the behavior that typify relationships between friends. Friendship is a relationship between people, organizations, or countries that is characterized by mutual assistance, approval, and support.
So I guess those disappearing ‘friends’ were never our friends to begin with. Honestly, I wish they’d let me know sooner…
Thankfully, we can have a better kind of friendship.
The amazing grace of the Master, Jesus Christ, the extravagant love of God, the intimate friendship of the Holy Spirit, be with all of you. (2 Corinthians 13:14, MSG)
Of course, than we have to be his friend too.
Prayer – Father, help us be caring friends, especially during hard times. Amen
How Long Should I Grieve? (from Memory Bears by Bonnie. Follow Link below)
The answer to the question of how long one should grieve is as numerous as there are hearts that are broken by personal loss.
Grief, like love, will last your lifetime. It will be intense in the beginning, then as each day turns into weeks, then months, your grief will find a place in your life. As long as you live, you will remember your loved one…and you will grieve. (Bonnie)
—As I see it, I need not be ashamed of loving Ron so much that the grief doesn’t ever stop. I am not weak because I still cry. I am not a failure because I still love. And neither are you… Brenda J Wood
If I can’t have life with Ron here then this life I am living is the next best thing. I am busy but content.
There are some who question my recovery. They wonder why I still occasionally cry. They only see the random drops that take effect without my permission. I wonder what they would say if they knew about the private ones. I will not apologise because I miss the love of my life.
I am making some headway in my healing. From the example of others in the same boat, I’ve learned to lean on God, take care to cook proper meals, exercise, reach out to others, go to an event or two alone.
I look at married couples who seem to thrive on bickering, insulting and back biting one another. I want to scream at them…some day you will regret this.
I look at those who are loving one another like Ron and I did, and I want to say…”yes, you have it right…but remember, one day you will be me. Nourish and care for one another even more that you do now, because some day, you too will be alone and wonder why you didn’t pour even more life into your marriage.)
I want you to know that whatever you are going through right now, you can survive it and even at some point begin to thrive again, because God is enough. Just over a year since my heart break and little by little, I am healing. The scars remain but if I don’t pick at them too much, I can get through the day.
When I started a ‘thank you’ page listing those who made this journey a bit easier, I ran out of room. They listen, let me cry, bring meals and invite me to events, pray for and with me. They read books on grief so that they can relate. They hug and write notes and e-mails, keep in contact one way or another.
But especially I thank those who already walk this road of grief. You know what it feels like to be alone, to feel unprotected, and to learn new skills and responsibilities. You understand when I say I don’t feel like I belong anywhere anymore. You set the bar for recovery
For instance, a cousin lost his wife about the same time. This week he made a point of eating dinner out at a nice restaurant. To his surprise he found lots of people eat alone. So that is my new goal.
To sum this all up, God is sufficient and He works through people. This verse says it all.
2 Corinthians 1:3-5-All praise to the God and Father of our Master, Jesus the Messiah! Father of all mercy! God of all healing counsel! He comes alongside us when we go through hard times, and before you know it, he brings us alongside someone else who is going through hard times so that we can be there for that person just as God was there for us. We have plenty of hard times that come from following the Messiah, but no more so than the good times of his healing comfort—we get a full measure of that, too.
Prayer: Dear God of Healing Comfort, thank you for all you are and for your people who in so many small /large ways help others when they can…even in their own pain. For Christ. Amen.
I can’t believe it’s a year already. No one told me the journey would be so hard or that I would feel so exposed.
Jeremiah 10:19 -Woe is me for my hurt! My wound is grievous: but I said, Truly this is a grief, and I must bear it” (KJV).
Perhaps other widows said something but if they did, I don’t recall their words. I do however remember the look in their eyes. That should have given me a hint. We who had been loved and cherished find ourselves suddenly uncovered; that is unprotected, exposed to the world because our man is gone. Thank God for the One who is willing to take up that stance for us.
Isaiah 54:4-6a- Fear not, for you shall not be ashamed; neither be confounded and depressed, for you shall not be put to shame. For you shall forget the shame of your youth, and you shall not [seriously] remember the reproach of your widowhood any more. For your Maker is your Husband—the Lord of hosts is His name—and the Holy One of Israel is your Redeemer; the God of the whole earth He is called. For the Lord has called you like a woman forsaken, grieved in spirit, and heart sore—even a wife [wooed and won] in youth(AMP).
So my dearest Ronald…We rejoice with you as you enjoy heaven, even though our hearts continue to miss you. We strive to be the family you cared so well for, because you were always the beloved Husband, Dad and Afi we needed. You need not worry about us. God is covering for you…Love from Brenda and family.
Prayer- Thank you God that you are both Comfort and Covering for those struggling through grief. You can’t believe how grateful we are…In Christ. Amen
I am supposed to expect a terrible day tomorrow because Ron died a year ago on August 22nd. Apparently I am supposed to finally realize Ron is not coming back. Quite frankly, I figured that out the day he died.
The truth is that God has been excessively faithful to me for the last 364 days. I doubt that will change on day 365.
Instead of mourning, I determine to thank God for our wonderful years together. I thank God that Ron is free from pain and suffering.
I thank God for loving family, friends ,neighbours and even strangers, who cared for me in so many ways these last months.
Heartache is love with no where to go. (Margaret Brownly-Grieving God’s Way.)
So this week-end I attended both a funeral and a fiftieth wedding anniversary. Not a great combination. Thankfully found myself surrounded by good friends/family at each occasion. I saved my worst reactions for home alone. Still recovering in some ways.
And there is nothing to do but just keep walking forward into the pain because if we don’t, God can’t get a grasp on it to sooth it with his grace.
Oh but for the grace of God, what would ever we do?
2 Thessalonians 2:16-17- Now may our Lord Jesus Christ Himself, and our God and Father, who has loved us and given us everlasting consolation and good hope by grace, comfort your hearts and establish you in every good word and work.
Brenda J Wood