Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Galatians 6:2

Tonight, I stood in my kitchen frying chicken as the tears fell ...

I miss my Mama.

I've been looking back through blog posts that I have started and not finished.  I figure it is time to finish this one since it has been on my mind lately ... I'm not sure how long it has been since I started this post, but I do know that nothing has changed.

In less than a week, we will mark 18 months since my Mama died.  Not a day goes by that I do not think of her.  At least once a week, I almost reach for the phone to tell her something ... anything.  There are so many things I wish I could ask her ... things I wish I had asked when I had the chance.

I know in my heart that I am no different than anyone else.  Everywhere I look, I see hurting people ... and in this fallen world we live in, death isn't the only thing that brings grief.  If I have learned anything over the last 18 months, it is that grief is an intensely personal journey.  A path that we all walk a little differently.  

But it is not meant to be a private journey.

Galatians 6:2
Bear ye one another's burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.

Romans 12:15
Rejoice with them that do rejoice, and weep with them that weep.

Stop and let that sink in a minute.

We were never created to walk through our trials alone.  As Christians, we know that we always have the Holy Spirit to guide and comfort us (see John 14), but God also commands us to be there for each other ~ to help in time of need.  God doesn’t tell us to fix the problem, He simply tells us to share in the burden.

I am not very good at this ~ in either direction.  My tendency is to be a hermit.  I want to hold on to my personal pain and I often shrink from the pain of others.  But this isn’t what God intended. 

I have often heard it said and probably even said it myself, that God will not give us more than we can handle.  I no longer think this is true.  I believe that God allows situations that we absolutely cannot handle on our own ~ whatever form they may take ~ in our lives that are needed to help us to grow and mature in our faith.

When I think back 18 months to the time when Mama was home on Hospice care and then to the day she died and the days following, my mind doesn’t always immediately go to the pain and grief.  I can also think of my sweet friends in our homeschool group who provided meals for my family in a time when they would have been living on peanut butter and jelly had it been up to me.  And then there was the amazing “coincidence” that my dear friend from church was in town the day Mama died despite the fact that she has moved a couple of hours away.  Amy chose to come sit with me during one of the most difficult days of my life.

My friends didn’t have to bear my burden, but I will never forget that they chose to be the hands and feet of Jesus for me.  I pray that I never miss an opportunity to do the same for someone else.

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