do you ever wonder how we can find our way back to praise when life has yielded a gutting loss ?
when we are left empty-handed. when fear and the despair of grief are pulling hard on our shirt tails.
when darkness is haunting and hemming in our fragile hearts…sweat pulsing through face and palms- heart racing.
mind flooded and foggy with grief.
it all feels too much for a soul to endure.
the weight seems unbearable and the deep rips in our flesh feel permanent and irreparable…out of hopes’ reach.
i have been surrounded by stories of deep loss over the past years, and each time i am given the sacred privilege of hearing a story it reminds me afresh how wobbly the ground of grief is. and how it can make us feel like life is a total loss. pain has this strange way of eclipsing our view of joy.
this feels so true when we are weak with heartache and have lost sight of hope.
but this is what i know of grief; it yields a strange and unexpected understanding of what it looks like to find joy. it leaves us cut deep and vulnerable and fresh out of strategies for living a nice, good life.
it catapults us into messy and this is the very place God cuts through.
He comes near to soften and melt off the hardness of winter’s edge.
then, He reckons our pain with His unending mercy. and by reckon, i mean He considers, regards, and looks FULLY upon. He literally feels every single measure of our suffering and takes it upon Himself. He is with us in the deepest possible way and feels the sorrow with us. and that is the very reason we are not destroyed by pain. He not only understands, but has walked in our shoes and has overcome it.
this alone gives us hope and speaks of life beyond the now of loss. then little by little He invites us out to places where we can dance on the ashes of this life. not because we forget the gash or the losses…
and so, it’s the very remnant of our brokenness and ache which are now- against all hope- being rendered into beauty. it’s His signature and unmistakable handiwork.
afterall, He is a God of the impossible.
and so it is from bended knee that i continue to whisper a hushed, gutted and costly yes to the life that’s been rearranged by death. and from this sacred, tear soaked ground i choose to believe in joy again. and if you are unable to utter these words dear one, then i will keep walking and weeping with you…and hold onto hope when you cannot.
Those who plant in tears will harvest with shouts of joy.
They weep as they go to plant their seed, but they sing as they return with the harvest. Psalm 126: 5,6
for Ginnie, Jenna, Celia, Kathy, Kim, Diane,Eileen & Christi and all those who walk this holy road of gripping loss. may you taste of a goodness that is altogether otherworldly … meant to wet the appetite for heaven and hold us in the hope of now. xxoo jamie