Access—to the powers that be—very few of us have it–or do we?
When my husband and I were first married, I observed that whenever he would call his dad, (his dad owned his own law firm in Boston, MA), his calls were put right through—-every single time.
However, when we visited the law office, I heard his assistants take message after message, and very few people got right through to my father-in-law.
My mom is a pretty popular gal–and she has many friends, and so much family. This past year, she has been battling cancer. I have noticed that whenever one of my siblings or myself wants to spend time with her—she has all the time in the world for us—-we are a part of her inner circle. However, she tires easily, and so limits her time spent with others.
So what is my point here? My point is that in the same way that my husband had immediate access to his dad, and I have access to my mom, because we are their children—whoever is a child of God–has access to Him as well.
We are God’s kids!! We have access to Him. If we call out to Him–we get right through. He is never too busy for us.
Aren’t those amazing thoughts to dwell upon? He will never stop fighting for us, even when we can’t fight for ourselves. God is our Dad!!! Think about that!! The One who created the heavens and the earth, has created new lives within us, and calls us His Own!!
This week I had to go to the Dentist for a cleaning. While there, and chatting with some other ladies, I was asked how many children I have. I responded with, I have five, but one is in heaven. This opened up the conversation–where I heard another lady tell me she had a child in heaven also, and then others started telling their tragic stories—an eleven year old killed while hunting, a car accident, a disease.
Why am I recounting this—because tomorrow is Thanksgiving—the day we as individuals, communities, and a nation, give Thanks to God. It is the time we recognise that God is God—the giver of our blessings, the giver of our lives–but is He also the giver of our trials, and the taker of life? If so, why would we want to thank Him for that?
Why would I want to thank Him for taking my son? Why would others want to thank HIm for their trials, their diseases, the loved ones He has taken? Why?
Wouldn’t we want to avoid this God, who can take from us our health, our loved ones, our very lives?
That is what many do. They avoid God—thinking by doing this–that maybe He will forget about them—and they can avoid the pain of life.
Many wonder—how do I get on the good side of this God–so that I will receive good things from HIm?
Others say—it is not God doing these things to us—it is us doing these things to us—-we kill each other, we sinned in the first place–and this brought sin into the world—so now we have diseases, accidents and earthquakes and hurricanes and tornadoes. God isn’t responsible for those things—we are responsible.
But what does God say? He tells us quite clearly that He is sovereign over the affairs of men. He tells us that He is on the throne. He is the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords. Yet He also tells us that He has given us free will. We can choose to sin. He allows us the consequences of our sin. If we point a gun at someone else and pull the trigger and shoot–the other person will be shot. The other person will pay the price for our choice.
If we choose to drive recklessly, others may pay the price of our choice.
This King of Kings, and this Lord of Lords—chose to reveal Himself to us—by coming down from heaven, being born of a Virgin, becoming a baby, living life as a humble carpenter, having a three year ministry, where he healed people with diseases, healed the lepers, healed the blind, set people walking again—-He touched the suffering and the downtrodden—-and then He died for us, and as He did so—He forgave those who crucified Him, saying they did not know what they were doing.
Jesus showed us a God who loves us, all of us–deeply—a God who suffers with us—a God who heals us—and He heals not just our bodies—He heals our souls.
He deals with our sin condition—-when He was crucified on the cross—He crucified all our sin on the cross. We can now experience freedom from choosing to sin. When He rose from the dead, He showed us a God who has power over death—and that He will raise us after death as well.
We are not condemned by Him. We are not judged by Him. We are forgiven.
We are forgiven.
We have been given life—for all eternity with Him. The One who loves us. The One whose scars show us His heart for us. Our great, powerful God—is humble, gentle and loving. He is near to the brokenhearted. He is near to me. He is near to you.
But He will not force Himself upon us. We each need to choose Him. He says, “Behold I stand at the door and knock.”… Rev. 3:20 Each person has a choice to make—will they let Him in? Will they open the door of their life and let Him in?
I let God in—and so…..
I am thankful!! I am thankful!! I am thankful to our God!!
May you be encouraged—during this season of thankfulness.
My husband and I lived in Milwaukee, when Jeffrey Dahmer was killing and eating people. In fact, my husband lived only a street away from where Jeffrey Dahmer lived. We did not know he was doing this. No one knew for years–that he was doing this. However, when my husband and I were dating each other, my husband was very protective, and asked that I call him when I arrived at my apartment. One night, I got caught up in a conversation with my landlady and forgot to call him. He showed up at my doorstep, very concerned. It touched my heart that he showed such protection for me. At the time, I thought it was a little bit overboard, but in hindsight, knowing someone like Jeffrey Dahmer was out there–it was not too much protection at all!!
We like to think that Jeffrey Dahmer is an aberrant – and that people who go into schools and shoot children are an aberrant– but in reality–we as people are capable of great evil–as holocausts down through ages have shown.
I’m sure people have thought we have evolved and are beyond these things–but anyone who studies history knows that we have not changed in nature, all that much.
What is God’s response to our evil against each other? We are told that God grieved and regretted making humans. Genesis 6:5,6
Honestly, when you look at human history, and you see what the Nazi’s did in killing 6 million Jews, or the communists in Russia did in killing a least 20 million people, or the Chinese communists in killing 75 millions Chinese— (and this is just a short list–there are so many, many more atrocities), don’t you wish for some justice—a little wrath of God bringing about the end of this evil!
That was what Jonah was wishing for against the Ninevites. The Ninevites were enemies of the Israelites and Jonah hated them. So when God told Jonah to go to them and tell them, their end was near—and they should repent– Jonah didn’t want to go. He knew God. He knew God was kind and merciful, and that if the Ninevites repented – God would spare them. He wanted the Ninevites to die!! You know the story—Jonah disobeyed God—got swallowed by a great fish–the great fish spit Jonah up on the shore of the Ninevites–and Jonah preached his message of doom and repentance. (The Ninevites had just seen this guy come out of a giant fish–so that lent Jonah a certain credibility–they ended up repenting—and were saved.) Jonah was sad–he wanted to see justice not mercy. God was tender with Jonah–God understood Jonah’s desire for justice, but God wanted Jonah to understand God’s desire for mercy.
Actually–there are plenty of times throughout Biblical History where justice was served, and wrath was delivered. But, these times were after God endured with great patience, many, many atrocities.
Our sin against each other–our evil against each other, brings about God’s wrath.
Why? Because God loves us, and He can’t stand to see this evil. He knows how much we hurt each other. If we are so bent on destroying each other, He will eventually take the option out of our hands. I also think God grieves, because He made us in His image—until sin destroyed and distorted us. Just as we are capable of great evil, we are also capable of great nobility and good. How He grieves to see His image distorted in us—how He yearns to bring us back into a relationship with Him, and restore us to who He meant us to have been all along.
Why does this God of wrath seem so different from the God of love that we see through Jesus?
Actually, this God of wrath is not at all different than this God of love.
God has been continually reaching out to us with arms of love and forgiveness. Apart from God and His Spirit and His power—we are essentially the same humans we have always been—capable of great evil, and deserving of great wrath. With God’s spirit and power, His image is restored in us.
It is only in understanding who we are–and how much we need what God is offering to us that we can really appreciate the great gift offered to us through Jesus.
Many people have a difficult time believing in God’s forgiveness and love–they feel undeserving of it. I’m here to say–they are not deserving of it, neither am I, nor is anyone:
We earn and deserve eternal death for our sins, but God is giving us life through what Jesus has done for us. It is a gift—we receive this gift by faith. Prayer is a way to express this faith.
Here is a suggested prayer:
Lord Jesus, I need You. Thank You for dying on the cross for my sins. Thank you for the gift of your life, for the gift of eternal life. Please come into my life, and make me into the person, You created me to be. Amen.
Here is a link you can go to to find out more about growing in this relationship with God: startingwithGod.com Remember, God wants to restore each of us to who He meant us to be all along.
Every year, our family puts up our Christmas Tree. We get out the boxes of decorations–they are in red tubs with green lids, and each ornament is nestled in its original boxes—I am bragging about this area of my organization, as it is the only area I can brag about. 🙂 We make hot cocoa, have some cookies, and decorate our tree.
I love decorating the tree. We usually buy an ornament to commemorate a vacation we took, or a special trip we took and so decorating the tree is a walk down memory lane. We talk about the trip or remember the people who gave us the baby ornament, or any ornament we put up on our tree.
After Sean died, this usually wonderful tradition of decorating the tree became a tradition that led to grief. Every ornament became a memory with his memory attached. “Remember, we got this ornament when we took the trip to Florida and we went to Disney World?” Then I would remember how Sean wanted to go to Florida to Disney World so badly. There were T.V. shows on the Travel Channel highlighting the Disney Parks, and he would watch them over and over again.
“Mom, can we go to the Disney Parks?” “Well, Sean, you can pray about anything, so you can pray that we go to the Disney Parks.” In my mind, I didn’t know how this would ever happen, it seemed unlikely to say the least, but when Julia, my daughter told me all she wanted In the whole world was a baby sister, (she was 5 at the time), I told her the same thing—”well Julia, you can pray about anything, so pray for God to give you a baby sister.” I was thinking we could look into adoption. Instead I found myself pregnant at the age of 45, giving birth to a baby girl at the age of 46.
Sure enough, shortly after my son started praying to go to the Disney Parks, my sister-in-law called my husband and she wanted to plan a family trip with our families and their parents to go to the Disney Parks. (Their parents had a time share that we used the points from to book timeshares in Orlando, and my sister-in-law knew the websites to get the best deals on the Disney tickets—and so we found ourselves down in Florida—in the Disney Parks!!) We had a blast!! Sean had a blast!!
Looking at the ornaments–led to all those memories, which led to grief, but it also led to remembering the answered prayers as well. This helped us stand in the reality that God exists, and He loves us, He listens to us, He cares for us.
It was very difficult to continue with this tradition of decorating the tree. We celebrated our first Christmas without Sean a mere 3 months after we lost him. We were still in a state of shock. My husband and I thought we needed to continue with our traditions, that the children needed these things to bring the past into our present and our future. Even though it felt like everything had changed, some things remained the same. God’s love remained the same. We have found that each year, there is more of a blessing in the remembering, than grief. It has helped to bring Sean into our present and will help bring him into our future.
Just writing this story, I am remembering Julia praying for a baby sister, and God answered!! God does not always answer these types of prayers—as my nieces who were only daughters will attest—but He did for Julia. Perhaps because He knew that Julia and all of us would need this baby in the days to come, (our baby was 6 years old when her brother died.) She would bring us God’s comfort and love in her hugs and kisses and declarations that, “Sean is in heaven, and we are going to heaven too, we will see him again.”
Christmas is celebrating that God left heaven and came down to earth in the form of a baby. “Immanuel” means “God is with us.” In John 1: 1,14, we find this concept of : The Word is God and the Word became flesh and dwelt among us.
In Romans 8:31, it says, “If God is for us, who is against us?” In other words–it doesn’t matter who is against us, because God is so big and great, we are covered by Him.
Romans 8: 38, 39 also says– nothing can separate us from His love.
I am here to bear witness to these truths. God is With Us. God is For Us. Nothing—not death nor life, nor any created thing can separate us from His love. Not losing a child, or the grief that this loss brings, or any other problem in the entire world can separate us from His love.
If you are having trouble believing this, I want you to think about how much you love your children, and you are a mere human being. If you and I can love with such passion as imperfect human beings, imagine how a perfect, infinite being who considers us His children—loves us. It is not so hard to imagine when we think of it in those terms—is it?
However, God’s thoughts are greater than my thoughts, and His ways are greater than my ways. Sometimes, (ok—many times), I question God and what He is doing in my life. I questioned Him many times for taking my son. I have come to the realization that God is not upset with my questions, but sometimes His only answer is to wait on Him, and trust Him, even if I don’t know the answers, I can trust Him, I can trust His love, I can trust that He is for my family, He is for me.
You can trust that God is for you, He is for your family. You can trust in His love. He is “Immanuel”—God is with us—He is with us in our joy, in our grief and in our lives!! So Be encouraged!!
Love and Forgiveness—they go hand in hand. In fact, it is difficult if not impossible to have one without the other. Let me explain—as a parent—I have forgiven my children over and over again—and they have most assuredly forgiven me. Why? Because we love each other. In fact, while I find it difficult to forgive almost everyone else in my life, it is not that difficult to forgive my children.
Why is that? Dare I say that is because God has given me a great, great love for them—so that I will care for them, sacrifice for them, and put their needs above my own. I think if the situation called for it—I would die for them. I think most parents would say the same thing.
Why? Because this is how God has designed us. He has given us this parent-child relationship so that we can understand the greatness of His love for us and the greatness of His forgiveness towards us.
Well—what if one is not a parent? I was not a parent for the first 31 years of my life. Yet, I had parents. I saw the sacrifices they made for me and my siblings. I saw the many, many acts of love—and I saw all the ways love could be expressed—words of encouragement, acts of service, gifts, touch, and quality time spent with each other.
I’d like to give you an example of each of these things my parents did for me and my siblings. My mom would praise and encourage me often. She would notice things that I did and praise my efforts—even if it was as simple as cleaning out the sink.
My Dad showed his love in acts of service. He would scour pans, vacuum around the house, set up tents when we were camping with great care, chop up wood for our wood burning furnace—and do a myriad of other tasks all to take care of us, and make life easier for us.
My mom was in charge of gifts and gift giving. While my Dad’s salary provided for all our needs, my mom’s salary went to the luxuries of life—gifts, vacations, etc. My mom would shop for Christmas with great care, and then both of my parents would wrap the gifts together. Together they made Christmas time one of the most magical times of the year.
Both of my parents would hug us. However, after my dad had his stroke—hugs and touch were one of the few ways he had to communicate his love, as he lost his ability to speak—and so that was how he would show us he loved us. My Dad lived for 5 years without speech, until God took him home. (Tears come to my eyes at the thought of this.)
Quality time was spent with my parents every day. We ate supper together as a family, every night. We often laughed together, and told stories of our day around that old farmhouse table that my Dad had lovingly restored. Our family took a vacation every year together. We went camping and swimming and canoeing. We took a big trip to California and went to Disney Land and Knot’s Berry Farm. We went to New Orleans. We went to Virginia Beach. We had fun together, and we still tell stories of the times we spent with each other—(and let’s be honest—the fights we also had during these times.)
When I was a teenager, and wanted to be on the track team, my Dad ran with me to help train me and get me in shape. He spent quality time with me, and he would tell me his stories and tell me what a great runner I was and was going to be. (Which was total love on my Dad’s part—as I was not that good. 🙂 My Dad however was a great runner. )
I know that you could tell me your stories of how your parents showed you, they loved you. Maybe you can’t—maybe your parents were not good. Even if that is the case—we have a Father who is very, very good. This Father’s love is perfect for you and for me. He demonstrated that love by sending His Son to live and die for you and me. Take it from someone who has lost a son—you don’t give a son or a daughter up—unless there is no other way to rescue others that you deeply love.
For instance, my cousin had leukemia, and her brother had an operation to donate his bone marrow to help his sister. This was an act born from love and desperation—to take a risk with one child, for the sake of another child. We have seen this risk taken when people donate a kidney or another organ they have two of—to save someone they love.
The song, All Things New, keeps running through my mind, so I thought I would share it with you all. As I went to look for it on Youtube—I found the backstory of this song–
From Mike Weaver: “We wrote the song ‘All Things New’ as a prayer over my dad as he was dealing with pulmonary fibrosis. My mom said he would listen to the demo of it over and over again. Little did I know that would be the last song I wrote that my dad would get to hear…this side of heaven. I believe the moment he took he last breath here, was just the beginning of how real the meaning of this song is for him now in the very presence of Jesus. Because of what Jesus has done for us on the cross…our broken places are not the defining words spoken over us. Our brokenness is an incredible opportunity for the redeeming work of Jesus to be shown in our lives. So, even in the darkest moment, we can say in faith…from the ashes, from the dust, I will rise up because of Jesus who makes all things new.”
I hope this song encourages somebody today!!
[Lyrics] All Things – Big Daddy Weave:
I’ve heard You can take what’s broken and make it whole again
Well, here’s the pieces of my heart, what can You do with them?
‘Cause I can’t hold them all together anymore
So I let them fall surrendered to the floor
You make all things new
You make all things new
God of mercy and love
Do what only You can do and make all things new
Only You can bring such beauty from the depths of all my pain
Only You can take this shattered heart and make it beat again
Oh, You hold us all together in Your hands
I surrender all I have and all I am
You make all things new
You make all things new
God of mercy and love
Do what only You can do and make all things new
From the ashes, from the dust I will rise up, rise up
Out of darkness into the light I will rise up, rise up
From the ashes, from the dust I will rise up, rise up
Out of darkness into the light I will rise up, rise up
Tonight, our family watched a movie together. It was an action-adventure movie, where against unbelievable odds, the good guy saves the day. At some point during the movie, I turned to my husband, and said, “You’re that guy—the guy that is good in a crisis, who saves the day.”
Once, when my husband and I were out for dinner, a woman seated near us, fainted and was laying on the floor. The waiters and waitresses ran to her aid but didn’t know what to do. My husband is a Firefighter/EMT. He had gone outside to grab a sweater, and when he came in, he was faced with this crisis. (I had told the waiters and waitresses that my husband would help.) He calmly went over to the woman, knelt beside her, and took her pulse. By this time, she was awake, and he started asking her questions to assess her health history. By the time the paramedics arrived, he calmly gave them her vitals and history and they then took her away.
It seemed to me that my husband’s presence calmed everyone down in the room, and I was filled with admiration for my husband.
Many years before, when we were standing in a lobby of a theatre with open candles around the perimeter, I saw a young woman back into the flame, and her hair caught on fire. My husband moved like lightening — extinguishing the fire with his bare hands, saving the girl, and possibly the theatre. He acted like it was no big deal. But it seemed like a big deal to me.
There are many men and women like my husband—they are good in a crisis, and they serve others with their skill sets all the time.
The day of our son’s accident, my husband heard his pager go off, stating that there was a motor vehicle/bike accident. He was out of his chair like a shot, going to help. It was our son.
At the funeral of our son, my husband spoke about the fact that the ambulance was changing shifts, and so they were only 1 minute away from the accident. He was also struck by the fact that the paramedic instructors had just finished a class in our town, and they came to the scene of the accident. My husband personally knew these people and thought highly of their skills.
After our son had been airlifted to the hospital, the doctor who worked on Sean had previously been in Afghanistan as a combat surgeon.
These details meant something to my husband—these were his kind of people—people who serve others. My husband saw the hand of God in the service of these people. He saw God’s lovingkindness in the service of these people. He saw God Himself, through the acts of these people.
When we were at the hospital with Sean, we were on the pediatric floor, and we were surrounded by nurses and doctors who took care of our son and showed compassion to us and to our other children. We saw God’s lovingkindness through them.
When our country experienced 9/11—we also witnessed men and women, running into buildings while others were running out. They ran in to save, they ran into to serve. We saw God’s face in their faces.
It is easy to look at the bad, and dismiss God and dismiss His existence, His power and His love.
It is not so easy to look at the good—the good in people—especially when there is a crisis—and dismiss God—dismiss His existence, His power and His love. For what other reason do we have to act as we do—except that we bear His image.
If we as humans, can act so nobly—just think what that means about the One who made us, and loves us.
For my husband and I—all these things—all these people—combined with experiencing God’s loving presence and strength— testified to us of God’s goodness, God’s grace and God’s love.
So the next time you see a good guy or gal working to save the day or a moment, or a child—remember the One who made them, the One Who saves us all—and thank them for bearing God’s image to you—and Thank God for making them!
We are approaching the anniversary of my son’s passing. My son Sean died 8 years ago. His accident was on September 16th, and he was declared dead on September 17, 2013.
I want to talk about a difficult subject—the subject of coming along side someone in grief.
When Sean died, others sought to come along side of us and help us—and there was a great outpouring of service and love and help.
But there was also silence from those we “expected” help from. My mom told me a story, that helped me understand. You see, my mom’s sister lost 2 of her children and her husband within a 6-month space of time. My mom said that at times she was so overwhelmed in her own grief that it was hard to help her sister in her grief. She did help her sister—but it wasn’t easy.
This has helped me to understand that I and my husband and children weren’t the only ones who were grieving when Sean died. Others needed grace in their grieving as well. They may have been grieving Sean or they may have been grieving something else going on in their own lives.
Also, I came to realize that no one—not my husband, not my other children, not my extended family, no friend—could ever meet my deepest needs—only God could do that.
That is not to say that others do not have a role to play in helping others who are grieving.
Right now, there is a family who has lost their dad. Another friend and I have been trying to organize others to help them. This friend frequently tells me with great passion: “We are apart of the body of Christ, we are His hands and His feet, and God wants us to move and help others.”
She is absolutely right.
My mom and my Aunt, (who lost her family members), came most frequently to help with–well everything. Other family members also came to help.
After Sean died, a neighbor down the street from us, a sister in Christ, organized meals for us for 2 months—and people from all the churches in my town signed up to bring us a meal.
People came right after Sean died and cleaned our house.
A couple friend, (in the Pastorate), meet with us for over a year, once a week, and provided grief counseling, and friendship.
My best friends took my children on excursions and spent time with me.
All amazing things.
I also experienced rejection, conflicts, loss of friendship, and silence from others.
In reading others’ blogs—the good, the bad and the ugly are all typical and normal things to experience to those who have lost a loved one.
Grief—suffering—these are difficult, difficult things. Grace, kindness and gentleness with oneself and with others are needed during these times. Mostly, and above all else—God’s sustaining spirit is what is needed and is available to each of us, for the asking.
One of the worst things for my spirit, was to hang onto bitterness and unforgiveness. God has frequently pried my hands off these ugly things I was hanging onto and told me with grace and gentleness that He had something better for me to hang onto—Him!!
In saying this—I do not want to minimize the hurt that is felt by the grieving party, over the lack of caring they may be experiencing. I understand the hurt. I too, have felt the hurt.
Rather, I want to give a way for the hurt party to understand that they are not alone—others have walked the same path and have found freedom from the hurt in forgiveness and in the presence of God.
If you are grieving right now, I am praying for you!! I would appreciate your prayers for my family and myself. Thank you!
Blooming!! My Rose-of-Sharon bush that I pruned last fall, is now blooming!! When I pruned it, I knew I was doing the right thing for it, but it was still difficult to do. I pruned it way back—so I was not sure if it would come back well. And now it is blooming.
I pruned my lilac bushes as well, and they are also flourishing—they are full leaved, and abundant, whereas before their pruning their branches were straggly, and not very full. Now they are exactly how I hoped they could be.
Just as I pruned my bushes for their health, and benefit, God prunes—or disciplines us—for our health and our benefit. In Hebrews 12, it says that we discipline our children, doing the best we know how to do for them in our limited wisdom and understanding. Our Heavenly Father disciplines us—with all knowledge, all wisdom, all gentleness and all power. He does this for our best, to make us complete—or Holy—as He is Holy.
This past year of Covid—I have experienced God’s pruning in my life. I did not enjoy the quarantines—(I know some people who did—they liked the slower pace of life)—I did not appreciate the shortages of supplies—I did not love wearing the masks—I did not like not having social times with family and friends—I reacted to all these situations with annoyance and anger.
This week, I went to our community’s school board meeting. I have homeschooled my children, but my grandchildren attend public schools, so I wanted to see this meeting. They were talking about a variety of issues that people have conflicting opinions about, (i.e. masks, critical race theory, LBGTQ, etc, etc.)
There was a great deal of passion and some anger in that room. After the meeting, I went to talk to the Superintendent of the school board, and I told her how much I appreciated her calmness in the room. Beside her was my neighbor, who is an administrator of the schools. I told them that I would be praying for them in this coming year and thanked them for doing their jobs in the midst of a very difficult season of life.
My daughter-in-law is a teacher, and this past year, I have taken her lunch and her baby to nurse during her lunch break, and so I have seen and heard first-hand the struggles and trials of the teachers as they seek to teach our children, during the age of Covid.
What is the point of all of this—we have all been tested this year. We have been pruned. We have been put in situations where we have gotten angry with each other. We are annoyed with each other. We have differences of opinion with each other. We feel powerless, and out of control.
And it is the pruning of the Lord—the discipline of the Lord—that leads to our Holiness—that we may experience the reality of the freedom that Jesus sacrificed to give us and bear the image of our Father—to the world.
Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us.
We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith. Because of the joy awaiting Him, He endured the cross, disregarding its shame. Now He is seated in the place of honor beside God’s throne.
I am reading a book, set in pre-World War II. In it, the author describes the grief parents experience when their child dies. The author is so accurate in her description, that I wonder if she also has lost a child.
I think that when we become parents, we become vulnerable in a way, we never had experienced before. Our child’s pain becomes our pain, their dreams, our dreams, their successes, our successes, and if we should lose them in this life—we never recover. The hole they leave in our hearts will always be there, until we too, cross the boundaries of this world and enter into the next.
We have set aside this weekend to honor and remember all the fallen soldiers and all the loved ones who have gone before us. I am also going to remember their parents, and the ones who have suffered their losses.
If you are one of those who remain behind, I want you to know, you will be prayed for, and that you share company with God Himself.
God is a parent. We like to think of God as all-powerful, and invincible, and He is, but because of His love for us, He has made Himself vulnerable to us. His love for us makes Him vulnerable to us, just as our love for our children, makes us vulnerable to them. Our pain, becomes His pain, our dreams, His dreams, our successes, His successes. And if we should turn our backs on Him, and break fellowship with Him, He grieves.
Talk to a parent, whose child won’t talk to them anymore. They grieve. In scripture, it tells us that the Holy Spirit grieves when we sin. Sin is saying, “Hey—I want what I want, and I don’t care who it hurts.” Sin is walking away from God, and God grieves. He is vulnerable to us. He didn’t have to be vulnerable to us, He made Himself that way, when He created people who could choose to return His love or not.
I have learned more about the love of God the Father, from being a parent, than anything else.
If you are grieving, God knows your heart, because He grieves as well.
When Jesus was here on earth, He knew that He would raise Lazarus from the dead, and yet He wept at Lazarus’s grave site with Mary and Martha. He was able to enter into the moment with them and grieve.
So, this weekend as we grieve and remember, please know that we have a Heavenly Dad who shares and enters into those moments with us. I hope that encourages you, as it does me.