There is no shame in being hopeless and broken.
God loves the broken. Christ came for the broken. It’s the broken and breathless who long for the Spirit to blow life across their wounded hearts.
It’s the hopeless and fearful that run faster to the safety of their Shepherd.
It’s the worried and weary who are thankful for a Burden-bearer.
Christmas is the story of Hope entering the world, of Light shining forth in darkness, of Love overcoming death.
A heart has to be looking to find it.
A heart has to be desperate to believe it.
A heart has to be hungry to come to the table of everlasting bread.
Read the rest here: Qualified by Hopelessness: An Empty Heart Can Be Filled
Yesterday I confessed that I was already exhausted and we were barely into December!
But I managed to drag the tree down from the attic and adorned it with the faith fortifying ornaments I’ve acquired since Dominic left us seven plus years ago.
I didn’t finish making things sparkle but I did make a dent in it.
Tomorrow is another day but tonight I will sit and savor the twinkling lights that remind me darkness doesn’t win. ❤ Melanie
It’s a question every hurting heart has to answer if you celebrate a traditional western Christmas: Will I put up a tree this year?
I had a few months of lonely travel through the Valley of the Shadow of Death before I had to answer that one.
Dominic left us at Easter, so by December I had learned that wishing didn’t make anything better nor did it make decisions disappear.
As Christmas drew near, I just could not bring down the usual decorations from the attic.
So I didn’t.
Read the rest here: Why I Still Put Up a Christmas Tree
It’s so easy to withdraw and hide.
It’s so easy to decide that since the world isn’t what I want it to be, I’ll just ignore the greater “out there” and create my own little corner filled with people and things that suit my preferences.
But that’s not who I’m called to be.
Read the rest here: Be The Difference
A couple of years ago, I had a grace-filled, heartwarming visit with another bereaved mama who came all the way from Maine just to hang out with me. And that was so, so good.
As she and I shared over coffee and tea, shopping and meals, lounging and walking we found so many ways in which our journeys have been similar even though the details are really very different.
One is this: There was a distinct moment along the way when each of us began to see light and color again in the midst of our darkness and pain and it was a turning point.
Read the rest here: There’s A Moment When The Light Makes It Through Again
One of the rituals I observe when the time changes and night closes in so very early is to light a candle each evening in the dark.
I’ve done it for years but now as I do it, I think of Dominic.
It is my small way of declaring the truth that darkness will not win.
It’s my protest against despair and hopelessness that threatens to undo me–threatens to undo ALL of us at one time or another.
Read the rest here: Light Bearers and Candle Snuffers
A fellow bereaved mom commented on a recent holiday post with this question: How do you make joy, when your heart has no joy?
It was a good and honest query. One that stopped me in my tracks.
Read the rest here: Flickers Of Light, Guiding My Heart Home
There are two ways to deal with the scars pain leaves behind: try to cover them up or display them boldly.
Hiding seems the easier way so many times-because the scars are tender and the last thing I want is to invite more pain. But it takes great effort and is rarely successful.
Read the rest here: Choosing to Be a Lighthouse
I like to think of Dominic surrounded by songs and sounds of unimaginable beauty. So I count the days, and I count it joy that I will see him again.
I can hear him saying, “Do you really believe, Mom?”
Read the rest here: Prisoner Of Hope
Through the fog and dark and limits of my sight
I hear birds singing
as they welcome the day
I still can’t see.
Read the rest here: Through The Fog And Dark
Imagine being used to the modern convenience of electricity at the flip of a switch and then being suddenly plunged into darkness and disconnection.
Unprepared-no matches, no alternative fuel sources, no extra warm clothes for winter days and nights-just plucked from the world you knew and dropped into a world you didn’t.
That’s what it felt like when Dominic ran ahead to Heaven. No warning, no chance to think through what life might be like, what changes I would have to accommodate, how I would need to face the days, weeks, months and years of his absence.
Read the rest here: Sudden and Unwelcome Change