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One Foot in Heaven

By on Feb 28, 2017 |

I have had many emotions in the past few months.  All of the Seven Stages of Grief have shown up for Roll Call:  Shock and Denial, here.  Pain and Guilt, present. Anger and Bargaining, yep.  Depression, Reflection, and Loneliness, yes, ma’am.  The Upward Turn, Yes.  Reconstruction and Working Through, yes, indeed.  Acceptance and Hope, present and accounted for.  The thing that no one tells you is they don’t happen one at a time.  All Seven Stages show up for class every day.  Not all of them stay all day.  Some of them check in later in the day.  But it has been a bit of a surprise that all seven like to show up almost every day for longer than you would like.  Fortunately, some are just not participating as much as they used to. So, if you had tried to tell me that I would ever see a silver lining four months ago, I would have thought that you obviously had not...

Love, Marriage, and Valentine’s Day

By on Feb 14, 2017 |

It’s Valentine’s Day today. I see the heart shaped boxes of chocolate. I imagine all of the floral bouquets being assembled and delivered today. Expressions of love will be given and received. Expressions of affection that are sometimes hard to articulate will be printed in cards signed by those who wish they could be so eloquent. It is a lovely day that is set aside as a reminder to tell each other we love them. My husband and I are sharing our 36th Valentine’s Day together today. It marks the 32nd Valentine’s Day celebrated as a married couple. Valentine’s Day in the early years of courtship and engagement were grand expressions of love. After marriage, the children began to come, so Valentine’s Day was turned into more of a family expression of love. Regardless of how we have celebrated the day, it has always been reflected in a way that represented the depth of the relationship. I...

Adversity

By on Feb 7, 2017 |

We all experience adversity in our lives. It can be the loss of a loved one, the loss of a job, or the loss of a relationship. It can come in the form of physical, emotional, financial, or spiritual distress. While one is in the throes of adversity it feels like a fog that is so thick you can’t see through it. Having the knowledge that others before you have gone through similar experiences is a small comfort. If only adversity came with an instruction booklet so that we could read how everyone else came through to the other side. One of my favorite Bible verses is James 1:2-4 “My brothers and sisters, consider it pure joy when you fall into all sorts of trials because you know that the testing of your faith produces endurance and let endurance have its perfect effect, so that you will be perfect and complete, not deficient in anything.” James is telling us to expect adversity as a...

Grief and Hope

By on Feb 4, 2017 |

I like facts. I like to see things written in black and white. I am a visual person. So when I am asked to imagine heaven I am not sure what heaven looks like. Does it look the same to everyone? Or is heaven more of a feeling? I admit that I don’t know much more than the average Sunday School lesson has taught me about heaven. So I guess that is where hope comes in for me. I have a very limited knowledge about what the Bible has to say about heaven, so I have been doing a lot of reading. I want to know more. Hello, Reverend Google. Let me type my questions to see if I can find out something more. What does the Bible say heaven looks like? Lots of stuff popped up and one of the things that I read were some quotes from C.S. Lewis on Hoping for Something More. I never feel that reading something inspiring is an accident. I feel that God purposely directs us to it. I found it at...

Grief and Strength

By on Feb 1, 2017 |

Today marks the fourth month anniversary of my son’s passing.  That is a sentence that I would have never dreamed I would be typing.  After I typed it, it looked strange to me.  It was as if I were looking at something someone else had written. Over the past four months I have had so many people say, “You are so strong.” or “Your strength is amazing.”.  The funny thing is I don’t feel strong at all.  I feel functional.  I feel capable.  I am able to get dressed every day, feed myself, take care of my home and my family.  But I do not feel that I possess any strength that is more than the average woman  my age.  Nothing before four months ago could have prepared me for this. I was reading a devotional online the other day and I came across a quote by Charles Spurgeon on the subject of strength.  I will share the portion that jumped out at me. “Are you mourning over your own weakness? ...