"To the angel of the church in Philadelphia write: These are the words of him who is holy and true, who holds the key of David. What he opens no one can shut, and what he shuts no one can open." Revelation 3:7 NIV
Thursday, October 29, 2009
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
If you stand nearby and listen, you will hear the sound of a bell. Looking around for the source of the sound, you will see that it comes from the smaller horse in the field. Attached to the horse’s halter is a small bell. It lets the blind friend know where the other horse is, so he can follow. As you stand and watch these two horses, you’ll see that the horse with the bell is always checking on the blind horse and that the blind horse will listen for the bell and then slowly walk to where the other horse is, trusting that he will not be led astray. When the horse with the bell returns to the shelter of the barn each evening, it stops occasionally and looks back, making sure that the blind friend isn’t too far behind to hear the bell.
Like the owners of these two horses, God does not throw us away just because we are not perfect or because we have unconventional problems or insurmountable challenges. He watches over us and even brings others into our lives to help us when we are in need. Sometimes we are the blind horse being guided by the ringing bell of those whom God places in our lives. At other times we are the guide horse, helping others to find their way.
Thanks to my friend Mickey for sending this to me today.
"Each helps the other and says to his brother, 'Be strong.'" Isaiah 41:6 NIV
Monday, October 19, 2009
Too much loss lately, too much emotion all day, every day. So much sadness, so little joy. How do you find your way back to the surface when you just keep sinking, sinking, sinking...
One Moment More ~ Mindy Smith
"He replied, 'You are talking like a foolish woman. Shall we accept good from God and not trouble?' In all this, Job did not sin in what he said." Job 2:10
Saturday, October 17, 2009
May I invite you to let your heart dance with Me today? Only I can turn your mourning into dancing. I will give you the beauty and grace needed for the world to see that you are My Beautiful Bride. When you dance with Me, you will feel yourself move to the beat of My heart. It is time, My Bride, to put on your dancing shoes. Now allow me, Your Prince, to play a song, a song for your soul. A song that will make your heart beat with Mine now and throughout all eternity.
Your true Prince Charming
Excerpt from His Princess Bride ~ Love Letters from Your Prince
by Sheri Rose Shepherd
"You have turned my mourning into joyful dancing. You have taken away my clothes of mourning and clothed me with joy that I might sing praises to you and not be silent. O Lord my God, I will give you thanks forever!" Psalm 30:11-12
Sheila, my love and prayers for strength and comfort in the coming days and months.
"If we have been united with him like this in his death, we will certainly also be united with him in his resurrection."
Romans 6:5 NIV
Thursday, October 15, 2009
"The wolf will live with the lamb, the leopard will lie down with the goat, the calf and the lion and the yearling together; and a little child will lead them." Isaiah 11:6
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
And my eyes fell on this:
And I knew this was what I was meant to see...
My Sweet Hubby always called me his Princess. And I called him my Prince..sigh...
It's taken me a few days to work up the courage to sit down with it. I knew it was going to be an emotional experience and truth be told, I am really, really tired of crying. But today was the day. And right off the bat, I get this:
I want to reveal a sacred secret to you, My beloved. Although I am your God, I am also your eternal Husband. I will come soon to carry you over the threshold of eternity. My desire is to lift the veil from your eyes so that you might see who you really are, My Princess, My Bride. I am the Lover of your soul. I long to get close enough to give you a glimpse of My eternal love for you. If you will seek me with all your heart, I will reveal Myself to you in extraordinary ways. If you will come before Me and ask, I will give you a new hope in your heart that will change your view of Me, of yourself, and of the world around you forever.
Your Creator and Husband
Excerpt from His Princess Bride ~ Love Letters from Your Prince
by Sheri Rose Shepherd
"The Lord All-Powerful, the Holy God of Israel, rules all the earth. He is your Creator and Husband, and he will rescue you." Isaiah 54:5 CEV
Monday, October 12, 2009
I packed Thursday night and Friday morning Lulu and I jumped in the car and headed northwest. Spent a few hours with my baby boy (!) and then checked into my hotel room and tried to get some rest.
Saturday morning we headed northwest again. To the place my Sweet Hubby and I loved the most...Charlottesville, Virginia. Home of Thomas Jefferson's Monticello, the University of Virginia and so much more.
Fujis, Romes, Red Delicious, Jonagolds, Winesap, Braeburns...ahhhhhhhh!
And I haven't even mentioned the fresh apple cider that we brought home.
Nor have I mentioned the warm apple cider donuts that we enjoyed along with a cup of hot apple cider. And yes, we enjoyed them in the rain. I think it made them taste better!
And just so you don't get jealous, I'm not gonna talk about the other apple "stuff" we got...like Carter Mountain Grove apple butter and apple cider vinegar. Nope, not gonna mention that!
But I will tell you about the apple cider slushies we slurped on the ride home! They were the bombdiggity!
Here are a couple of Charlottesville memories of happier times:
Taken on our last trip to Monticello
My Sweet Hubby and I at Barboursville Ruins
Sorry for the scrunched up face - that day the sun was shining brightly!
Matthew and Stefanie ~ thank you for sharing smiles (and tears) with me this weekend!
No, I didn't forget that it's Music Monday! I heard this song on the drive up on Friday, so here it is - from me to you...
The Words I Would Say ~ Sidewalk Prophets
"Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him" James 1:2-5
Friday, October 9, 2009
I’ll never be over it.
Please, don’t tell me he’s in a better place.
He isn’t with me.
Please, don’t say at least he isn’t suffering.
I haven’t come to terms with why he had to suffer at all.
Please, don’t tell me you know how I feel
Unless you have lost a spouse, it’s not possible.
Please, don’t ask me if I feel better.
Bereavement isn’t a condition that clears up.
Please, don’t tell me at least you had him for so many years.
What year would you choose for your spouse to die?
Please, don’t tell me God never gives us more than we can bear.
Please, just tell me you are sorry.
Please, just say you remember my husband, if you do.
Please, just let me talk about him.
Please, mention his name.
Please, just let me cry.
Monday, October 5, 2009
When my Sweet Hubby was first diagnosed, I spent a LOT of time on the Internet as he slept...researching the disease and ferreting out potential treatment protocols. In the midst of my search, I came across an organization called CancerCare. By their own definition "CancerCare is a national nonprofit organization that provides free, professional support services for anyone affected by cancer." I highly recommend them.
Support. That sounded good to me...I checked it out. And found that they offered an online Pancreatic Cancer Caregivers support group. All CC groups are facilitated by Licenced Social Workers specializing in oncology. The groups are closed to the public and applicants are screened to ensure that they meet the criteria for "membership." I did...and spent the next 4 months with the most amazing group of people. Most of us were wives caring for our husbands, but there were also brothers caring for sisters, daughters caring for mothers and daughters caring for fathers - all of them suffering from the beast known as Pancreatic Cancer.
We shared things with each other that we couldn't share with our loved ones. Mainly our fears and sorrow. For our loved ones we were strong. But with our CC group we were able to fall apart and fall into the "arms" of others who understood and that was a great blessing. I truly came to love the people in this group. And then came November 9th. I was the first in our session to lose my spouse. Oh, the love that poured out...indescribable.
I have since transitioned to a CC partner's bereavement group. It's not the same. It doesn't need to be, couldn't be, I guess...
But I'm still in contact with my former group. Those bonds are strong and the roots are deep. My struggles are theirs and theirs are mine...then and now.
On October 1st, one of my closest friends from the group lost her beloved husband. He fought long and hard...but this disease always wins in the end.
And so, these are difficult days. Another woman joins a group she never wanted to belong to. Her pain is fresh. Mine is refreshed yet again.
My youngest son (how did he get so wise?) lovingly reminded me in an email of a recent sermon given by my pastor.
"Remember the sermon pastor Tommy gave a while back discussing why we suffer and one of the reasons was to guide others through their suffering? Well, I'm sure God knows that it's painful for the "helper" to go through that suffering with someone else, but knows we're strong enough for it."
Reading that, I'm reminded of how my son helped a friend through the loss of his father just months after my Sweet Hubby had passed away...and how difficult that must have been for him.
So, my friends - these are difficult days. Yet another group member has just brought in hospice for her precious husband. Deep breath...
I'm here for them, as they've been present for me. You see, we've been wearing these moccasins...
Let the Waters Rise ~ Mikeschair
"Praise be to the Lord, to God our Savior, who daily bears our burdens. Selah." Psalm 68:19