Friday, October 16, 2009

A year ago - last time

We have finally come a full year... A year ago today, we said goodbye for the last time to Seth's physical body and had our memorial service at church (the next day). I haven't shared this yet, but I wanted to. Some of the pictures will be familiar.. The extra people for the first two minutes are all us. The last half include friends, family, people who took the time to come and show their love to us and Seth.

I"m headed out of town for the weekend, Silent Retreat. I'm excited to spend this time with God and hope to come back refreshed and renewed.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

In Other Words Tuesday - October 13, 2009

Before I jump into "In Other Words Tuesday", late but with both feet, I need to take care of a family matter. TODAY is my "Little" (as in 13 months younger than me and several inches taller) sister's birthday!! And it's a big one but I won't embarrass her by saying which one here.

Happy Birthday, Kari!!!! I love you. May the next years be as blessed as these first were!

And now onto our quote of the day:

“It has been well said that ‘earthly cares are a heavenly discipline.’ But they are even something better than discipline- they are God’s chariots, sent to take the soul to its high places of triumph. They do not look like chariots. They look instead like enemies, sufferings, trials, defeats, misunderstandings, disappointments, unkindness.” Hannah Whitall Smith

I chose this quote several months ago for TODAY. Yesterday was one year since we kissed our youngest son goodbye and he was ushered into Heaven. It hasn't been an easy year. I stumbled across that quote reading a book, I'm disappointed that I can't remember which book it was, but it may have been Heaven by Randy Alcorn. When I found it and reserved today, I was hoping that I would SEE more evidence of it in my life. You see, I KNOW the above to be true, I believe it, even when I don't feel it.

Several years ago, when my husband and I were just starting our parenting journey, our first pregnancy ended in a miscarriage. I was crushed. Disappointment doesn't even begin to describe what I went through at the time. While my husband and I were not walking with the Lord, I had been raised in a household that believed in God and I knew that God was a God of miracles and hope. I couldn't understand why we would be given this glimpse of joy and have it snatched out of our lives. I began seeking in earnest.

Ultimately, I wound up at the office of a Christian counselor and reading many christian authors. The one year "anniversary" of that date found me at a local cemetery that has a "memorial to the unborn", reading a letter I had written, pouring my heart out, and giving my life back to God. But it took a year. And a big disappointment. At the end of that year, I realized that God was simply waiting for me to open my heart to Him. If THAT wasn't one of "God's chariots", I don't know what would be!

Not having Seth here with us has been a suffering, a trial, a defeat, a misunderstanding. I stop short of calling it an "unkindness" because I believe strongly in the benevolence of God. However, unkindness have been endured because of the situation incurred by being a bereaved parent. And still, God shows up. The comfort that I have received, from the Lord, and from people who love the Lord, has been nothing short of amazing (especially yesterday). I'm learning the "heavenly discipline" of seeking comfort from the Lord as it's pretty difficult to find it in earthly ways.

I wanted to be able to write this post and share the many LARGE victories and triumphs I have experienced since "losing" Seth. By worldly standards, my triumphs likely seem small. Sometimes by MY standards I am disappointed that the Lord hasn't brought me further along (by now, etc). (Still learning that "heavenly discipline" of patience!). But triumphs HAVE been experienced. I grieve with hope! I more readily than before Seth, turn first to the Lord for comfort. In seeking answers, I am learning to wait on the Lord.

But here's the biggest thing. A friend took me to lunch yesterday. We shared some memories of Seth. I cried a little. And then I laughed a little. I still laugh. My family still laughs. That we still find joy is a testimony to the Lord's reigning in our lives, and a triumph of the soul!

Please link up below and visit others to see what THEY have to say about this quote!

Monday, October 12, 2009

Not Me Monday - finally back?

Welcome to another Not Me Monday, sponsored by MckMama. Head on over to her place by clicking on the button above and see what others have "not" been up to this week.

I have not, for all practical purposes, recently abandon my blog. (I know, a few of you actually noticed. Thanks for the checking in, you know who you are).

This did not happen because earlier this summer I did not hit a wall, emotionally wise. I have not, during this time, slowly isolated myself from some friends and the people who love me. I am not, currently, working to re-build some connections and fix that little problem.

I have not spent the last month reliving every moment of this time frame a year ago, when we said goodbye to Seth.

I have not, during this last month, continued to fall behind on what-feels like EVERYTHING. I do not continue to be behind on the laundry, etc. I have not given up hope of ever catching up!

I'm hosting IOW Tuesday tomorrow and I have not been procrastinating writing my post (although I HAVE got it all written in my head). I'll get that up in the morning.