Sunday, October 26, 2014
As I opened my eyes this morning, I glanced at the clock on the other side of our room, it was 3 am. My heart sank, as another day with our son was upon us, and I immediately began to feel overwhelmed. Thinking it was too early, and needing more sleep, I "tried" to go back to sleep, however I couldn't seem to close my eyes, so I got up grabbed my latest read, and made my way to our office.
As soon as I began to journal what was on my heart, I PRAISED HIM for helping me to remember to breathe. Since the afternoon of October 13, 2014 the worst day in my entire life, I know one thing for certain that the only reason I have survived is because HE has been there to remind me to breathe.
HIS Daily Teachings today is letting me know that the new normal that D and I are so desperately trying to figure out with our four children is only possible when I choose to remember to breathe. Last night D and our children went out as a family of six for the first time since our son's passing. I stood at the front door of our home, feeling as if though my feet weighed a thousand pounds. My heart was racing, and panic was setting in. It was in that moment that I heard HIM speak to me "Breathe"
As I climbed into our truck, and D placed our son's blanket, tweety, and batman hoodie in his car seat, we began the first of many family outings without our son. As we drove I felt my sorrow deepen, as I still couldn't believe that this was indeed our life now. Tears welled up in my eyes, as I struggled to come to terms with our new normal. The closer we got to our destination, the more uneasy I felt. When we arrived, it was if though I had forgotten how to walk, and again I heard HIM speak to me "Breathe"
Our family evening out was spent with D's sister and her family. I was thankful that it was a quiet night of a family bonfire, and not in public where I had to see people, and be reminded that they only see six of us, when there used to be seven. As the night wore on, laughter and smiles spilled from us, a deep sadness began to set into me. Guilt set in, as our new normal meant, laughing, smiling, and allowing JOY into our hearts without our son.
This morning HE met me right where I was, as I wrote, "how do I live without him LORD, how do I go on without my little boy?" HIS response to me was, "Breathe" HE is wanting me to know that the only way I am going to survive this loss is to lean into HIM to press into HIM, and allow HIM to heal me. HE is telling me that in my brokenness HE is there, and though I may not be put back together the way I "think" I need to be, HE knows, and HE has already planned on my healing. HE is letting me know that HE is asking me to trust HIM, and the only way I now how to trust HIM is when I remember to "Breathe"
I am thankful that for the moments in my life where HE has taught me how to discern HIS voice, to know what I am to be doing. I am thankful that HE has taken HIS time to teach, lead, and guide me through the most difficult moments of my life. I am thankful that HE has written on purpose, for HIS purpose, how and when I would receive HIS healing. I am incredibly thankful that though each day seems more impossible than the last, I know that HE is there, and as each day passes my FAITH in HIM increases.
"let the wise listen and add to their learning,
Blessed are those who find wisdom,
Listen, my sons, to a father’s instruction;
HE is reminding me once again that my purpose in this life that I have been blessed with is to live out my FAITH in HIM. HE is wanting me to know that as my FAITH increases, it is because I am learning, and remembering HIS love for me. HE is telling me that the reason I am doing HIS good works, is NOT so that I am earning a place with HIM, so I am in right standing. Rather I am choosing to do HIS good works because of HIS unconditional love for me, and unlike anyone else in my life, HE has NEVER left me, nor has HE EVER forsaken me.. It is because of HIS unconditional love that I am still standing, and that is because when life becomes impossible, HE is there, reminding me and telling me to just "Breathe"
"For when we place our faith in Christ Jesus, there is no benefit in being circumcised or being uncircumcised. What is important is faith expressing itself in love." Galatians 5:6
Today D, myself and our four children will be attending our church for the first time as our new normal family of six. I am apprehensive about how, or what, or WHO, or when.... the questions are plaguing my mind, however I feel HIM, and HE is letting me that in order for me to move forward to push through my grief, I must remember to "Breathe"
HE is letting me know that the new normal we are trying to figure out means that breath by breath, moment by moment, hour by hour, is the only way I am going to survive this. HE is wanting me to know that the expectations that I have placed on myself, or have taken on from what other people have said to me, have NO room for HIS plan for my healing of my brokenness.
This morning as I struggled to put into words what it is like breathing without my son, HE led me straight to Mary Beth Chapman's book "Choosing to SEE"
"Maria was now in Heaven, and though we felt her absence so acutely we sometimes couldn't breathe, we still know the reality that we would see her again."
HE is wanting me to know that in listening to HIS instructions of breathe is HIS way of working in each of our lives. HE is wanting me to know that when I listen to HIM, and obey HIS commands for my life, that is how HE will heal, and mend my broken heart. HE is telling me that in allowing HIM to mend and heal my broken heart, HIS comfort will NOT only flow into me, but flow out of me, to reach the masses of other broken-hearted people who may or may NOT know of HIS amazing grace, and unconditional love that HE is waiting to pour into them, and through them so that they too will receive comfort, and healing.
There has only been one moment where in this entire living nightmare that has become our stark reality where I have almost passed out from the sorrow and grief the ran through the depth of my soul. I was upstairs, weeping over my son's bed, crying out to HIM to please help me to remember the life that lived in that bed, and to please erase the memories of the death. As my tears flowed from my eyes, D and my daughter came into the room. It was the first time that she would break down since the night before when the worst day of our lives began to play like a broken record over and over, taking us back to the moment of sheer terror and horror of the most tragic event we would ever endure, and that would ultimately change our families lives forever.
My brother and his family arrived late that night, and flew up the stairs of our home, and caught each of us in their embrace. As soon as I saw them, the reality ran over me like a freight train that the nightmare we were living was real, it really happened, is happening, and that our son is really gone. I cried the most I had cried since the previous afternoon, and I cried so deeply that I forgot one very crucial thing that I needed to do, and that was "breathe."
I was led downstairs to our couch, where I was gently set down, and told to lay my head back. It was then that cool cloth was placed over my eyes, as the tears streamed in a constant flow down my face. I sobbed, I wept, for my loss, D's loss, our children's loss, my parents loss, D's parents loss, and my brother's and his families loss. It was in that moment of weeping that HIS calm, HIS peace washed over me, and deep sorrow found me in a way that I had never experienced before in my life, and it was then that through HIS HOLY SPIRIT leading my brother said, "Breathe."
Words fail me in trying to explain what it is like forgetting to remember to do something that we have always taken for granted. Something as simple as remember to breathe. I am so comforted to know that HE loves me so much, and knew that I would struggle to put to words how I feel that HE blessed with my book, about a journey of struggle and HOPE that one family would endure, and how in their brokenness they pressed into HIM, and HE healed them, and mended their broken hearts, as HE began to comfort them. Then how that same comfort that they received through the writing of their book, brought immense comfort to millions of other grieving parents who struggle to come to grips with how do I, what do I, what is our new normal?
"I've walked the Valley of deaths Shadow - So deep and dark that I could barely breathe- I've had to let go of more than I could bear- And questioned everything that I believe - But still even here in this great darkness - A comfort and hope come breaking through - As I can say in life or death GOD we belong to YOU - "Yours" by Steven Curtis Chapman
"Endurance is NOT just the ability to bear a hard thing, but to turn it into GLORY" William Barclay
When planning our son's celebration of life service the only thing D and I were certain of was we wanted it to GLORIFY HIS NAME. We wanted people to know that GOD did this for us, and NOT to us. We wanted people to know that we are ALL HIS children, and one day we will ALL be called home. We wanted HIS message of HOPE to be shared, but us telling and sharing our story of triumph and overcoming darkness in our lives through HIS healing touch, and even more than than by TRUSTING HIM and heeding HIS word with each step we took, all the while remembering to breathe.
My Dear Brothers and Sisters in CHRIST JESUS~ I pray for each of your broken hearts today. I pray that you will know that HE is there, and knows of your pain. I pray that you will have the courage to seek HIM and allow HIM to take that pain from you, and pour HIS healing into you, and let it flow freely from you as HE comforts you and floods you with HIS peace. I pray that you will know that HIS purpose for your life is to receive HIS comfort, so that you will then be a comfort to someone else WHO needs HIM, as you share your story about how HE has healed you. I pray today that if you too are walking this extremely unbearable journey of loss just as D and I are, that you will know that you are NOT alone, and that HE has placed people in your life to comfort you, love you, support you, and help you as HIS hands and feet. I pray today that if you find yourself in a moment of deep sorrow that you will remember to just breathe.
Much love, prayers, understanding, compassion, and grace,
Your Sister in CHRIST JESUS,