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to see a video of Gretta
and pictures from her funeral

Friday, January 9, 2009

Okay Okay

Just for everyone's information, I am not going to kick the bucket "unexpectedly" or drop of the face of the earth, or spend the rest of my life hating God or anything like that.

I appreciate the concern that surges through those people who take the time to read what I write. It amazes me really from one day to the next, that people DO read this. It is a journal for me on how I feel day to day.

There are a few things I've learned so far from this experience...I'll share them. For one thing, grief is comparable to nothing else we experience. It is amazing how much changes when you are grieving. Things look different, people are different, places are different, most everything you look at is looked at differently, in a new light.

Grief is a process. I do not feel like I am who I was before, nor am I someone different, yet. I am in process. I do not feel abandoned by God, but sometimes I feel distant. Other times, I feel very close to Him, like He is beside me, talking to me, comforting me. I love my Saviour, I always will, He has done everything for me, He has made my life worth living, Him alone.
Sometimes I feel like I am going crazy, really. Other times I feel as if I have most of it "together". I laugh, I cry. Things are different, my relationships are different, my life is different, but my love and adoration of our living God is only deeper than it was yesterday. I know that God has a plan for my life and that while He may not have caused Gretta to die, He DID allow it. Nothing happens to us, NOTHING, that is not FIRST filtered through God's mighty and loving hands. God trusted me and my family enough to allow this to happen to us, He trusted us to glorify Him through this and we are trying to do our best. That doesn't mean we/I don't have days where we feel angry, lost, alone, neglected, confused, despaired, etc. We are human and it is good to go through grief fully. I try to write about this honestly and not sparingly.

I have also learned that I have so many friends that I didn't know I had before. Or friends that I had but did not realize how amazing they were. I am blessed in so many ways to go through this trial, I can identify with suffering, pain, agony and loss like I never could before. It is good to know.....but that does not take away the fact that it can be excruciating at the same time.

I had a few people send me emails after the last post. Some with advice, some sharing their personal, heart-wrenching stories for the first time with me, a stranger to them, and one person wrote something else, a sonnet. A love song, a ballad. I was amazed really at the words of this email and so I am going to post some of it now, with her permission. I believe God spoke through this gal, right to me, it was uplifting, encouraging and humbling. I hope you like it as well.

As I was praying for you, I was also asking God, "What is suffering?" The age-old question of why we must suffer and why God allows it. Of course there is never an answer--not an answer that would ever soothe my soul in the face of devastating pain. I thought of that horrible, horrible saying, "Time heals all wounds." Although I have not suffered loss on your level, I have watched enough people close to me to know that time doesn't heal anything. I have watched the pain subside from heart-wrenching, soul-stabbing pain to a dull, constant ache. And maybe in time, it eases into something of an ache that flares up off and on in different circumstances. As all of this was running through my mind while I was trying to pray in earnest for your family, God put the words of one of my favorite gospel songs on my heart, "There is a balm in Gilead....Jesus is the balm in Gilead."

Maybe you know the verses from Jeremiah 8, "Is there no balm in Gilead? Is there no physician there? Why is there no healing for the wound of my people?" (Feel free to SHOUT that last verse out loud if it so moves you). You can see why your recent post brought this to mind again. You said, "What I have gotten however; is a small bandaid with a dot of Neosporin on it to cover my gaping wound." I thought, "She's got it about right...." On a gaping wound, I would imagine that balm doesn't do much to soothe at first. (In your shoes, how often I would wish that Jesus was morphine and not a balm!) A balm takes time to do its healing. Comfort doesn't come initially, the pain still rages on. That is where time factors in and that hated saying.....but it is Christ who heals and not just time. Lesley, I do believe that your healing will be complete in Christ (our balm), but while you are on this temporary earth, you may always have the scar to remind you of the pain you have suffered (and even to remind you of the blessings you had in Gretta).

Thanks to everyone who posts comments and takes the time to respond to God's prodding on their hearts to speak.


ben and erin said...

Lesley that was a really neat post. Thanks for sharing what you've learned. It's hard to imagine what you're going through, as I've never experienced grief like you have. I find it a privilege to pray for you through your "process" and learn from your faith.

Nicole said...

I agree Lesley, God did allow this, and while you may never have an exact reason why I pray that God will allow glimpses of his purpose to be seen by your eyes.

And really, even if we understood the full purpose, would it be enough? Would we really be able to say, "Ok God, well then since that was the purpose it was ok." Of course not. God keeps things from us and reveals things in His timing and for His glory.

HIS power is made perfect through our weakness!!

You said at Gretta's funeral that you did not want her death to be in vain. And it will never be because there is a Higher power in it all!

And still... We question because we are human. We are not God. We do not have all the answers. When we are weak then HE is strong.

2 Corinthians 12:9
But He said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness. Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me."

not2brightGRAM said...

Once more, your post has touched me. Words fail me.