Saturday, June 23, 2012

Wait

Desperately, helplessly, longingly, I cried:
Quietly, patiently, lovingly God replied.
I pled and I wept for a clue to my fate,
And the Master so gently said, "Child, you must wait."

"Wait? You say, wait!" my indignant reply.
"Lord, I need answers, I need to know why!
Is your hand shortened? Or have you not heard?
By faith, I have asked, and am claiming your Word.

My future and all to which I can relate
hangs in the balance, and YOU tell me to WAIT?
I'm needing a 'yes', go-ahead and sign,
or even a 'no' to which I can resign.

And Lord, You promised that if we believe
we need but to ask, and we shall recieve.
And Lord, I've been asking, and this is my cry:
I'm weary of asking! I need a reply!

Then quietly, softly, I learned of my fate
As my Master repied once again, "You must wait."
So I slumped in my chair, defeated and taught
and grumbling to God, "So, I'm waiting... for what?"

He seemed, then, to kneel, and His eyes wept with mine,
And he tenderly said, "I could give you a sign.
I could shake the heavens, and darken the sun.
I could raise the dead, and cause mountains to run.

All you seek, I could give, and pleased you would be.
You would have what you want--But, you wouldn't know Me.

You'd not know the depth of My love for each saint;
You'd not know the power that I give to the faint;
You'd not learn to see through the clouds of despair;
You'd not learn to trust just by knowing I'm there;

You'd not know the joy of resting in Me
When darkness and silence were all you could see.

You'd never experience that fullness of love
As the peace of My Spirit decends like a dove;
You'd know that I give and I save... (for a start),
But you'd not know the depth of the beat of My heart.

The glow of My comfort late into the night,
The faith that I give when you walk without sight,
The depth that's beyond getting just what you asked
Of the infinte God, who makes what you have LAST.

You'd never know, should your pain quickly flee,
What it means that "My grace is sufficient for Thee."
Yes, your dreams for your loved one overnight would come true,
But, Oh, the Loss! If I lost what I'm doing in you!

So, be silent, My Child, and in time you will see
That the greatest of gifts is to get to know Me.
And though oft' My answers seem terribly late,
My most precious answer is still, "WAIT."

[ Author Unknown ]

Monday, June 11, 2012

The Gift Of Grief

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In the past few years I have faced more pain than I ever could have imagined. Since the moment I stepped off of that plane, into the hot Haitian air, I have been in a constant battle of joy and grief, extreme beauty and pain, outrageous discouragement and faith.

 

Each time I am faced with the hurt that this life brings I have 2choices. I can shut down, bite back the tears, smile and move on. Or I can feel, wholeheartedly, allowing the pain to happen because I know that it’s a healthy part of the grieving process. Over the years I have chosen both and I have learned through each and every trial, the gift of healing that grief can bring.

 

This spring was a time of trial in my personal life, with the loss of Gup and Ella Grace and the difficult decisions that I faced in those months, I was overwhelmed. Thankfully, I had someone to turn to that understood. Erica McNeal, a friend of mine and author of Good Grief was one of the first people I spoke to after I found out that Gup would be leaving me, and again after he was returned. You see, at just 32 years old, Erica was already a 3 time cancer survivor and had experienced the loss of 5 children, one through a disrupted adoption. Erica “got it”. Right away she sent me a copy of her book, Good Grief! and I lost myself in her stories. So many of the things she spoke about felt like they could have been hijacked from my own heart. I finished the entire book in just 2 days. Just a few weeks later, Good Grief! was the book that I read and wept over after Ella Grace died.

 

In an email that Erica wrote to me she talked about all of the “well meaning” things that people would say to me in the weeks to come.In the book she again talks about those things. Because she shared those things I wasn’t shocked when I received an email from someone stating that “God gave me Annabel so that it wouldn’t be so hard for me when Gup left” I took Erica’s advice and did not punch them.

 

Reading Good Grief! was a healing process for me because it allowed me to remove myself from my very personal situation and realize that hurt happens. Other people have walked this road and they have survived it. I would too. Reading about Erica and Todd’s experiences gave me something to focus on during those days when it felt like I would be stuck forever in that deep dark place.

 

Today marks 5 years since Todd and Erica held their daughter, Kylie Joy for the 80 precious minuets before Jesus called her home. The celebrate Kylie’s birthday Erica is launching Good Grief! today! To commemorate the launch Erica has a great giveaway going on:

 

Purchase an eBook, soft cover, or hard cover copy of Good Grief! and send your receipt to goodgriefgifts@gmail.com. Each person who sends their receipt will:
1. Receive a free pdf version of Good Grief!                                                        2. Have up to 5 opportunities to win one of the following daily thank you gifts:
     a. $45 Carrabbas Gift Card
     b. $45 Outback Gift Card
     c. $50 Amazon Gift Card
     d. $50 Best Buy Gift Card
     e. Signed Hard Cover copy of Good Grief! and a Signed copy of The Hour that Matters Most from Les and Leslie Parrott
3. Receive a free downloadable podcast of Erica’s talk, You Are Not Alone.
4. Receive a free downloadable recording of the Intro of Good Grief!

For groups using Good Grief! Purchase10 or more copies and email your receipt to goodgriefgifts@gmail.com to receive a six week Good Grief! Small Group Discussion Guide!

 

When Ella Grace died a copy of Good Grief! was given to Lauren, the woman who cared for her. From now on, I will always have a copy on hand to share with someone who is experiencing suffering. I can’t think of a better book to recommend to someone who is hurting and those who are ministering to them through their pain.

 

Go HERE to purchase Erica’s book, Good Grief!