Sunday, January 19, 2014

Despair to Hope

     I woke up this morning in complete despair. Again. Completely overwhelmed in my grief. Hugging my empty belly and wallowing in self pity. In the middle of my pity party, God reminded me of the verse that says He is near the brokenhearted. So I went looking for that verse because I couldn't remember it word for word. I read through it several times, and began to feel better.

     This Sunday was baby dedications and sanctity of life Sunday. I knew I couldn't handle that today. It's way too soon for me. I feel bad (maybe guilty?) that I wasn't there to see our friends' baby dedications. I love those families so much, but I just didn't feel like I could handle it. I, however, knew I needed to be in Sunday school. I needed to be in God's Word with God's people. Joshua was really concerned about me; after I overdid it yesterday and spent the rest of the evening in pain, he really didn't want to take me. I told him with tears in my eyes, "I need this. Please take me to Sunday School and bring me home. I promise to be good, take a nap, and rest the rest of the day." I made good on that promise.

     I put on makeup for the second day in a row. I put on light eye make up though because I was afraid I would cry. Of course I cried. We received lots of hugs and love from our church family. Our sweet friend, Leah led our Sunday School class in prayer for our family. I cried of course, but really crying makes me feel better. One of the passages we read was 2 Peter 1:3-8. Scott talked about the importance of maturing in our faith. He said that if more Christians were focused on maturing to be more Christ like, our culture would be more reflective of that. In that moment, I was reminded that Jesus is going to use this loss to make Joshua and I more like Himself if we let Him. It's okay to feel these emotions and wrestle through them with God, but we have to choose to hold onto the hope and peace Jesus wants to give us, if we ask and if we receive it.

     Joshua sent me downstairs on the elevator to get Lucas while he went to get Logan. As I was getting in, my friend Sara handed me a gift bag. I thought she was asking me to take it downstairs for her, but she told me it was for me. I could tell it was a blanket with little birds on it, and I started to tear up. Joshua made it to Luc's class about the same time I did. I told him I needed to get to the car, so he sent Logan with me. While we were walking to the car, I pulled the card out of the bag and read it. She told me she didn't really have the words to say, but she made this prayer quilt for me and the three plus hours it took her to make it, she spent praying over me and my family. The tears were really flowing then. When Joshua made it to the car and saw me, he said, "I'm never putting you on the elevator by yourself again." I handed him the card to read. We were both blown away by the time, love, and prayer that went into making my blanket. I'm sitting in my recliner with my blanket as I type this.

     Our friends' hugs, Leah's prayer, Sara's quilt-they are all symbols of the hope we have in Christ Jesus. Jesus is carrying us through this loss, and our brothers and sisters in Christ are instruments of hope He is using to minister to us.

"The Lord is near to the brokenhearted
And saves those who are crushed in spirit."
Psalm 34:18 (NASB)

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