Tag: mourning

The Break is Over

I took a long break from blogging. Not because I stopped writing. I filled several journal with thoughts and prayers in 2017. Plus, my diary is bursting at the seams with all my thoughts about last year’s events.

No, I stopped publishing because of pain I was experiencing. Looking back at 2017, I call it the year of loss. And if I’m honest, it was a year of too much loss. Of course, that’s my personal opinion. It’s still too raw to talk about it and I have to respect the privacy of my family.

However, I learned the beauty of a sacrifice. To be precise: the sacrifice of thanksgiving.

I find it easier to complain, to throw myself a pity-party. It takes effort and energy to say, “Stop it,” and then actually do it.

You see, there is a cost associated with a sacrifice. I’m giving something up. I’m offering something to someone. And in my case, I had to decide over and over to offer my sacrifice of thanksgiving to God.

I know, He does not make mistakes. I know, one day we will see how it was all for the best.

But when you’re in the pain, when there doesn’t seem to be relief in sight, that’s when God leans in and accepts my two words, whispered in the dark: “Thank you!”

The choice is mine: I can either drawn in my pain or I can be lifted out of my dark pit by saying these two words over and over, “Thank you!” God listens, He hears, and He does come to the rescue.

“Show me the right path, O LORD; point out the road for me to follow.

Lead me by your truth and teach me.

For you are the God who saves me. All day long I put my hope in you.”

Psalm 25:4-5 (New Living Translation)

 

 

What Happens When “the Hurt and the Healer” Collide?

DematerializationCreative Commons License Hartwig HKD via Compfight

The news of the sudden death of one of our church members dominated the discussions yesterday. It overshadowed the worship service and the congregational meeting that followed.

Social media has been a great venue, especially for friends, to exchange memories and pay tribute to this 38 year old young man. The sadness is overwhelming. And I am only someone looking in from the outside…

In the midst of life we are forced to pause and think about death, about the end of our own lives.

King David paused and faced these questions as well.

He prayed in Psalm 39:

“LORD, remind me how brief my time on earth will be. Remind me that my days are numbered – how fleeting my life is.

You have made my life no longer than the width of my hand. My entire lifetime is just a moment to you; at best, each of us is but a breath.

We are merely moving shadows, and all our busy rushing ends in nothing. We heap up wealth, not knowing who will spend it.

And so, Lord, where do I put my hope? My only hope is in you

Hear my prayer, O LORD! Listen to my cries for help! Don’t ignore my tears. For I am your guest – a traveler passing through, as my ancestors were before me.”

Psalm 39:4-7, 12

 

King David is putting things in perspective. He is making it clear where his priorities lie. We, too, have to come to the point where we acknowledge:

“My only hope is in you.”

Whatever I’m facing here, it’s temporary. I am God’s “guest -a traveler passing through.” Though the pain might be overwhelming, and questions are right there, front and center, we can know, we will see this young man again. His testimony of faith is expressed in many comments.

As I was reading a tribute a friend had written, I came across this song by Mercy Me. I think it is a beautiful picture of what happens when “The Hurt and the Healer” collide. Please click on the link and listen to the song.

The Hurt and the Healer

This is my Monday’s Prayer today for all who are grieving the loss of this special young man:

“Jesus, come and break our fears,

wake our hearts and take our tears,

find Your glory even here when the hurt and the Healer collide.”*

Father God, may your presence,

your love and your peace comfort all who mourn.

Give us all hope, a hope that overpowers the pain.

“I pray that God, the source of hope,

will fill you completely with joy and peace, because you trust in Him.”**

I pray for this confident hope to flow from those who believe in You, God.

In Jesus name I pray, Amen

 

* From the lyrics “The Hurt and the Healer” by Mercy Me

** Romans 15:13