No I am not hinting for candy, flowers or cards, nor do I expect them. However Patricia Day’s blog today is so wise that I wanted to share it with you. Valentines Day is such a couple’s thing that it excludes everyone else. We all know someone who is missing someone, even if it is because they haven’t found them yet.
Valentine’s Day fast approaches. Some will enjoy the day, while others will find it challenging because their loved one is gone.
Whether through death or by separation, Valentine’s Day hits hard, as many realize they are alone. They no longer have that special person in their lives.
Perhaps, like me, you know someone who, very likely, will live through Valentine’s Day with dread and despair.
Let them know that you care. It does not have to be a large elaborate card or gift; sometimes just a hug, a message or your time will suffice. Knowing that another person cares can make all the difference in the world. Loneliness does not have to feel as if you are completely alone.
Show them that you care and reach out to them on Thursday.
Years ago, I learned to balk at a Christmas with more than one big meal. That’s because we spent our first Christmas day together, running from pillar to post, trying to make everyone happy. So Ron, infant Judith and I trailed a mile down the road to my parents for seven am breakfast, drove through a blizzard to Gran’s for lunch an hour away and finally scurried home to serve dinner at our house for all of Ron’s family…..WHEW!!!
And who was cause of all this commotion? Me. I didn’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings. I felt guilty for saying no to anyone, so instead I hurt my own feelings…. and my family’s.
Little by little over the years, with Ron’s encouragement,we cut down to only one or two events per holiday. Today though, I find myself going to the Keenagers catered lunch and the Writer’s Nest home cooked Christmas dinner. WHEW!!!
Why? Because I can. And because all of these dear people are my friends and I love being with them. And because I decided I wanted to, with no guilt involved. It bears remembering that guilt is not from God.
Yesterday the first copy of my first children’s book, The Big Red Chair (CD included) arrived at my door. I’ll be reading it at both events. It is a happy, funny, sad love story about life and death…..
I wrote it because our smaller grandchildren didn’t understand what happened to their Afi. I expect lots of other little ones feel the same. We often unknowingly and unfairly lock them out of our grief.
And yes it is for sale….
“Death is a big relief to them.” This comment shocked me at first but as I pondered it, I sensed its truth. Of course Ron didn’t want to leave us but his heart was turning toward heaven long before he went there.
Little by little the foods Ron really loved became less imoprtant to him. He, the hamburger king (who would eat it three times a day if possible, ) lost his taste for Wendy’s and even homemade meatloaf. I kept buying treats to tempt his appetite but one nibble and the rest would sit abandoned.
He chided me for running around and cleaning, doing dishes and so on. “Just sit down and be quiet with me.” he’d say. “You can do that stuff later.” So I did.
Eventually he didn’t even want his beloved country music playing in the background.
The closer he got to God, the less he craved earth’s pleasures. . He wasn’t able to do the things he used to do so he enjoyed the things he could, like prayer.
Less time for earth’s pleasures gave him more time for fellowship with God, and the more time he spent with God, the more he looked forward to being with Him.
What if we started craving fellowship with God long before He called us home? More time with God? That would mean less time to binge eat or drink or dope up, less time in the mall buying stuff we don’t need, less time in unforgivness. Less time__________________? And more time with God, getting ready for the time we will be with Him in a brand new way.
How can things be the same when they are so different? Ron and I are still together in our little house. The family came to be with us yesterday. Charles and Tabetha brought lunch. Judith and I ate our standared white chicken with baked potato. Ron rested. The grandchildren play high-spirited games around our feet. This is all familiar to us.
But now Ron rests in a hospital bed, on morphine for pain, seldom conscious. The grands look at Afi (Icelandic for Grandpa) and say..Afi sleeping. Night Afi. and go on playing and trusting and expecting their parents to keep things right.
And the adults? We cry some, reminise some, fear some……while the grands, knowing they are loved…trust in that love.
Eventually the rest of us remember that we are loved too. We know Jesus. We have right relationships with God……and we determine to trust him…because he makes all things right–even when everything seems so wrong…
Brenda J Wood http://heartfeltdevotionals.wordpress.com