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to see a video of Gretta
and pictures from her funeral

Saturday, November 1, 2008

"Do The Next Thing"

I had coffee with a friend of mine the other day. This gal is a person who I did not know very well before Gretta died. Immediately following, she told me that she was going to call me everyday for "a long, long time". She has been faithful to that burden that God obviously placed on her heart alone. Everyday whether I answer the phone or not, she calls. I can hear her children in the background of the message, crashing around or crying or laughing, which confirms to me that in the "thick" of her day I was still on her mind. She stopped whatever it was she was doing and called me. It has been sortof a life preserver for me.

Funny, but I don't expect her call. I don't wait to see if she calls, she just does. Now, some people I have told that to immediately feel guilty because they don't call me enough. Or so they think. But I have to say that this woman was obviously given a burden by God to do this for me. If everyone called me everyday, it would not be a good thing. There are many, many people who have done and continue to do other things for me or our family and I am not saying one is better than another. It just continues to amaze me what God did for me through this friend in such a special way.

Then while we were having coffee in the middle of my messy house the other morning, she gave me another gift. She said,
"MY grandmother used to say, when you don't know what to do or how to keep going, 'Just do the next thing '".
Now this is something that spoke to me greatly. So since Thursday it has been my mantra. When I collapse on a chair or find myself standing in the kitchen staring out a window or starting a job and not having the strength to finish, I hear that little phrase, "Just do the next thing," and I do.


A day in the life of the Simmons said...

It amazes me how God can use so many people in so many different ways!
I am glad that you have been blessed with so many good friends.

Jessica said...

What a special friend! And what great advise about just doing the next thing!

Praying for you!

godlover said...

I stumbled onto your blog through a comment left on still another blog and I just had to visit yours and tell you how sorry I am that you've lost your little girl. Well, you haven't really lost her; you know right where she it; but you know what I'm trying to say. Funny how we find so many people who stand strong in grief. You're one of them and Heather is another. I just lost a nephew (less than 2 weeks ago) which reminded me of losing my son so many years ago now. That pain never goes away. I don't cry and kick and scream anymore but I will always miss him and Merle's death brought so many things to the foreground and it's like living through the sorrow all over again. I'm so sorry about Gretta and wish I could take away your sorrow or walk your path for awhile to give you a chance to rest. You will never "get over" losing her just as I never got over losing Richie. But you will find that God brings you through it. He never leaves you to grieve alone. And it's okay to throw a tantrum against death. I sure did my share of screaming and kicking and punching. But, yes, God does see you through it and it will get better. But for right now I think the most you can hope for is knowing she's with Jesus and knowing it's okay to cry. If I could I would do some of your crying for you but it doesn't work that way I'm afraid. I have added you to the list of those for whom I pray daily. Hopefully you will feel the prayers of friends, family, and strangers who are lifting you up even as I write this comment. I am godlover and my site is My name is Marj and I guess you could say I have a prayer ministry. I pray for other people and their problems. Please feel free to visit my blog and leave any comments or prayer requests. If you have something specific you'd like me to pray for just let me know. I will pray for Russell. It must be terribly confusing for him. He has his own grief and then he grieves at seeing you grieve so he's getting a double dose. My nephew was 18 when he died and his death brought too many painful memories of my own loss to the surface after so many years. And then my cat died (which I don't mean to compare in the slightest with your loss) but I've been grieving lately too. I tell you this only so you'll know if you visit my blog that I may be grieving but it doesn't hold a candle to what you are going through. But I did lose a son and I can empathize. And I will begin to pray for you and yours this evening California time. I usually pray between 8:00 and 10:00. I hope you will feel my prayers for you. But if you don't you can still know I will be praying for you everyday for quite some time. If you visit my site could you list all your first names and the ages of the kids in a comment on my blog. Again I'm sorry for your loss and please don't think that my grief over my cat in any way compares to yours. I suffered when my nephew died and brought back all my memories of when Richie died and then my cat died on top of all that so I had a lot of grief to deal with. I don't want you to think that I don't recognize the difference in our situations. You are a testimony to the Lord and like you, I don't know how people who don't know the Lord can in any way make it through this painful process alone. I'll be praying for you and your family. And again, I'm terribly sorry that Gretta died. What a beautiful little angel she was!