“Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.” ~Jesus
Have you ever had a moment when words “slipped out” before you could stop them?
Standing amidst the wreckage of hasty speech I would do almost anything to stuff them back inside.
I like to pretend that I didn’t mean what I said. I like to imagine that the words don’t reflect what I really feel.
And in the wake of burying a child, I find that I am ill-prepared to keep my mouth shut. Words tumble out because my emotions are almost always close to the surface.
The truth is, a glass only spills what’s already inside and my mouth only spews what’s hiding in my heart.
I am trying hard to fill my heart with grace, love and mercy so that what comes out heals rather than hurts.
I’m not always successful-the heart is deep and my wound is great.
But being wounded myself, I long to be an instrument of healing and peace in this broken world.
In the wake of burying Dominic, the most difficult spiritual discipline for me to recover has been prayer.
In part because my heart just doesn’t know what to ask for or how to talk to a God Who has allowed this pain in my life.
In part because I don’t really have a framework for placing the prayers I want to pray inside my ongoing struggle to commit my future and the future of my family to the hands of a Father Who didn’t step in to prevent Dominic’s death.
I still struggle with this.
“When it’s not your kid you can think of all kinds of lofty, theologically correct arguments or reasons for why God answers one prayer and not another–for why one person is healed and not another–for why one person survives a devastating-should-have-killed-him accident but not another.
But when it is your child that doesn’t survive or isn’t healed or is stolen through the violent actions of someone else…well, that’s a different matter entirely.”
Read the rest of this post here: The Problem of [Un]Answered Prayer
It’s my habit to watch the sun rise.
Even on Monday mornings.
Even when I might rather stay in bed.
Because every time the sky lightens from black night to bright day I’m reminded of two things:
I am not in control.
But God IS.
I can’t stop the world turning and I can’t make the sun rise.
But I don’t have to-I am not responsible for the big picture. I am not in charge of making all the pieces fit just-so.
My duty is to be the piece I was made to be.
To go where God sends me.
To do what God has for me to do.
And to leave the rest in His hands.
There are times I want to be in control, but it doesn’t last long. I quickly realize that I can barely keep myself in line, much less anyone else.
And when I let go, I am free.
I am free to be the me God has made me to be.
I free those around me to be the persons God has made them to be.
And that’s worth waking up to.
For the next few days I’m taking a break from creating lengthy new posts. So I’ll be posting some short notes of encouragement along with quotes I treasure and maybe re-posting the most popular old entries.
The summer heat is on here in Alabama and I think I need a little “refresh and renew” time.
I pray that each one reading this and carrying the heavy burden of missing a child of your heart will also be refreshed and renewed-that even in the midst of heartache and pain,
you will hear the Father’s voice,
you will know the Savior’s love and
you will receive fresh wind for the journey from the Spirit of God.
YOU. ARE. NOT. ALONE.
Growing up digesting Disney fairy tales can warp your sense of reality.
There are no unblemished princes or perfect princesses out there. The bad guys don’t always get what they deserve and the good guys don’t always win.
At least not here on earth.
Read the rest here: Messy Lives, Merciful Savior
I’m not the same me I was two years ago.
I no longer look with confidence down the driveway as friends and family pull away, certain that we will see one another soon.
I whisper, “Be safe” when we part, but know that they are not the keeper of their days and that “being safe” doesn’t mean everyone escapes deadly peril.
Read the rest here: A Different Me
It’s OK to not be OK.
If you are grieving, you are not responsible for making others feel better about YOUR pain.
You have suffered a great wound and you carry a heavy load.
You are allowed to express sorrow and longing. It’s what people do.
It’s what we have to do if we are going to make it through this dark valley.
Find a safe person and let. it. out.
Bottling it up inside only drags me deeper under the waves. Hiding my tears doesn’t save me from sorrow, it only makes me ashamed and anxious.
And there is nothing shameful in grieving my missing child.
Great grief is the price I pay for great love.
I’m not advocating pitching a fit in public.
It’s good to be sensitive to other people, and I want to extend the same courtesy and kindness to others I would like to have extended to me.
BUT–when sorrow rolls over me like a tidal wave, I do not have to hide to preserve the comfort of others.
And I won’t.