Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Silence, Prayers and Tears

Silence…is it golden?
 With five kids, it’s generally suspicious. Scratch that, silence is dangerous at our house. Even at night there is snoring, dogs barking, cats purring, always something. True silence doesn’t exist here in this country home. A silence in my soul has developed in the last year though. It’s been a good thing even if in some of these moments I’ve felt lost, it is a good development. For me silence has become a new way of processing. Writing has always been my outlet, my way of processing life. In the early days of my relationship with my husband (then boyfriend) he traveled and we emailed back and forth. I would even write him letters to give him when he got home from his travel for the week. When I had something big to talk with him about I wrote it out. It used to be so much easier for me to put into black and white my thoughts than to verbalize them. The last year I have been struck speechless though. My ability to pray and cry has remained and honestly deepened. So many prayers…so many tears. Oh, how good I have gotten at those.

Ecclesiastes 3
1 There is a time for everything,
    and a season for every activity under the heavens:
2    a time to be born and a time to die,
    a time to plant and a time to uproot,
    a time to kill and a time to heal,
    a time to tear down and a time to build,
    a time to weep and a time to laugh,
    a time to mourn and a time to dance,
    a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
    a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing,
    a time to search and a time to give up,
    a time to keep and a time to throw away,
    a time to tear and a time to mend,
    a time to be silent and a time to speak,
    a time to love and a time to hate,
    a time for war and a time for peace.

We know these times. Our lives are influenced every day by the ebb and flow of time. The last year has been a year of quiet soul searching for me. It has set me on a path that only The Father can orchestrate. As I have been walking through it I haven’t even been able to start to put into black and white all that I’m trying to process. I have spent many moments in deep grief. Grieving for the changes that are coming at me and upsetting the world I knew. Grieving for friends and loved ones that face days whispering good-bye and until we meet again. Grieving failures in health. Grieving for those that feel hopeless. Shedding tears at sunrises and sunsets. Crying instead of writing because I just don’t know what to write. Not writing because I don’t want to process the pain…I want to ignore it. Crying because I know the people around me are trying to piece together broken hearts.  Praying for peace in these moments. Praying for clarity of what to do and how to help. Praying for direction and grace.

We have attended many funerals in the last year. One was for a man that took my family under his wing and spent time with us like we were family. Truly reminding me that family is not made just through blood but in love as well. His influence on my children is something I count as one of my most precious blessings. When my parents divorced and created chaos he blessed us with calm. Only ever a phone call away he was the ultimate neighbor. Offering helping hands, serving in times of need, teaching the younger generations about work and ornery fun. He set an example that I pray will always stick with my family. There was no other place for us than beside his family in his final days and in the months since. I consider his daughter a sister in every way that counts and I will be there for her and his family, in every way that I can.

Another funeral was for a good man that decided that this earthly life was not something he could bear anymore. I stood speechless in shock when I got the message and have since ached for his family. I ache for him that his hope was so shrouded in pain that he felt the need to ask Father to welcome him home. I ache every day for the pain that his family is walking through. For the days they are missing his presence. For the minutes they wonder why. In the moments that they can only look to heaven, waiting for the answers that will come some day. I pray that they are blessed with the courage, strength and wisdom that will carry them through today and into tomorrow. I pray that they see the joy and his love in the moments knowing that even if he isn’t physically with them, he is still always right beside them. I was not close to this man but his daughter is an amazing woman and I consider her a soul sister, knowing her blesses me and I will always be there for her.

This last weekend has yet again rocked my world. Sitting around the campfire with dear friends I got a phone call that I never expected to receive. My 22yo cousin sought the peace of heaven and chose to leave this world of chaos behind. Very sadly I say that I am not close to him in any way beyond nearly sharing a birthday. He’s 14 years younger than I and we grew up in different worlds. Living only 45 minutes in distance away from him yet quite obviously a world away. He was such a handsome, smart and talented young man that was friends with and loved by many. I can honestly say he always had a smile on his face when I saw him. That alone is why my heart aches for failing him. We all struggle and I have no doubt that he faced his battles and that they were this overwhelming. My heart aches at the reality of his pain. There are days that only hope has kept me moving. Knowing that he couldn’t find any, that he felt so alone, I weep for him. I weep for my aunt and uncle and the ache of their empty arms. I ache for my grandmother and other family members that shed tears for him.

The silence is broken.

I am writing, again. Processing from heart to head and into black and white. Oh, the praying and crying. I’ve had conversations with my headed off to high school son about always using his voice. Always reaching out. Always searching for the hope and accepting the grace that Our Father blesses us with. I’m whispering to my grandfather, thanking him for being there to welcome my cousin to heaven. Whispering to my cousin that we will be there for his parents. Whispering in thanksgiving to Father for the years and moments we have and that He is enough to guide me through all of these final good-byes. I’m so thankful to have spent the weekend with friends that hugged and loved me through the distraction and daze of the weekend. He knew that camping with my friend who lost her father in a similar manner would have been difficult, too much, for both of us. So as sad as I was that those plans did not come together, I do have a glimpse of the bigger picture. Which keeps me counting blessings, the easy and the hard.

My life mantra has been that we are not guaranteed tomorrow so live right now, it’s all we’ve got. Never have I been so reminded of this as I have in the last 16 months. You are precious in His sight. There is a plan for you. If you’re caught in the darkness, reach out, even if it’s just to me, I’ll reach back. He is leading all of us down a path, a path I pray you will be anxious to explore. A path that is full of promise and hope. A path that I truly believe is going to bless countless others. With His gifts of faith, hope, love and grace we can do anything. I pray that I can teach my children through these experiences how to lean on others, ask for help and put one foot in front of the other as well as be the shoulder to lean and hand to hold for others. It’s hard not to get lost in the grief, so hard, but sometimes the sunshine on my face, storm clouds rolling in and rainbows dancing above is what gets me through. Not to forget the pheasants, hawks and eagles that are sent to cross my path but that’s a whole new post.

Accept the Father’s love, receive His grace, choose joy and hope for your daily walk.
Share His love, grace and peace as you step out in faith that He is always by your side.

No comments:

Post a Comment