Listen carefully to Chole’s words here (read them aloud once or twice):
The church is both afflicted and exhausted by the dizzying notion that God-given power should be exercised in every God-given moment. Jesus makes it clear, however, that [can does not equal should]. Jesus’ voice flattened armed soldiers, yet He permitted these self-declared enemies to stand up again. Jesus had angels at His disposal, yet declined to dispatch them. We dare not mistake these choices for passivity, resignation, or weakness. This dimension of strength was the fruit of power fully submitted to love.
Alicia Britt Chole
Jesus voluntarily chose to drink the cup of sorrow, pain and sacrifice.
It was not a foregone conclusion.
Read the rest here: Lenten Reflections: Fasting Formulas
Although I have observed Lent off and on for many, many years, it’s different for me now in a profound way.
Some of you know but may have forgotten that Dominic was killed the Saturday before Palm Sunday and buried the Monday after Resurrection Sunday, 2014.
Each year since then I’ve felt like I had to endure two sets of “anniversaries” because his death date and burial date are not only days of the month but also marked by moveable church celebrations.
It has been very, very hard.
Read the rest here: I Must Decrease-Making Room For Jesus. Lent As Invitation, Not Obligation.
Holidays are hard on bereaved parents’ hearts.
Even though our children are always on our minds, holidays act as megaphones, amplifying the missing, sorrow, grief and lost opportunity to build more memories.
So it’s particularly helpful when friends and family step up and step in, showing extra support on and around those extra hard days.
Here are seven ways you can bless a bereaved dad this Father’s Day:
Read the rest here: Seven Ways to Support a Bereaved Dad on Father’s Day
I’ve written often about how important friends are to our grief journey. They can encourage, provide practical help and simply by their presence remind a heart that darkness and despair is not all there is.
Men need friends who will step up and step in. They need masculine examples of sharing and caring.
They need grace and space to unlock the chest of emotions that they sometimes keep tucked away and hidden from their family because they think it’s their job to “be strong”.
So if you know a dad whose child has left for Heaven, reach out in the next couple of days before Father’s Day.
Read the rest here: Don’t Forget Dads!
I’ll be honest-I bristle more than a little bit when people suggest that bereaved fathers don’t feel grief as deeply as bereaved mothers.
They absolutely do.
The problem is that, as a group, bereaved fathers are less likely to make their feelings known, less likely to talk about the impact grief has on their lives and less likely to allow others into their private world of pain and sorrow.
For that reason, fathers are often overlooked grievers.
But they shouldn’t be.
Dads aren’t bystanders in the shattered world of child loss-they are participants as parents of a son or daughter whom they love just as much as any mother.
So just like Mother’s Day is hard for moms, Father’s Day is hard for them.
Read the rest here: Father’s Day for Bereaved Fathers
*I wanted to get this out early enough to help friends and family of a bereaved father understand a little better how they can encourage him as Father’s Day approaches.*