Tag Archives: heart

A Chapter Closed-at least for now.

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Today a chapter in my book of life closed-temporarily.  Someone who I’ve become friends with over the years succumbed to the pressure of cancer and she has moved from her life on earth to her eternal life in Heaven.  Sweet Kathleen fought a courageous battle. The odds were against her.  Sadly, dear loved ones, including a husband and two children, are facing one of the toughest nights of their lives right now.

I knew Kathleen was coming close to the end of her life among us.  Two days ago I saw two deer in the neighbor’s front yard while I was taking a walk.  My thoughts went to Kathleen immediately. I wondered if her time had come.  It made me think of Psalm 42.  It wasn’t time yet.

Today I walked again and the cloud formation above me was shaped as a beautiful cross.  I wondered again.  How is Kathleen?  Hours later I learned from a friend she had passed.  

I had to attend a meeting following the notice and my thoughts were sad; my heart aching for Kathleen’s family.  I entered the meeting place and went to the open chair at the table.  As I began to sit I noticed something on the chair.  It was the metal heart shown at the top of this message.  I have no idea why it was there, but it made me think of God’s deep, wide and everlasting love.  He will not leave us not forget us. 

I didn’t have a chance to speak to Kathleen directly before she died.  Her husband and children wouldn’t know me very well, but I knew of her pride of them.  I would want them to know Kathleen touched my life in a beautiful way.  She made me smile and laugh.  She was a lovely woman.  She was part of a chapter in my life and I was blessed to know her.

 

Psalm 42- The Living Bible

42 As the deer pants for water, so I long for you, O God. 2 I thirst for God, the living God. Where can I find him to come and stand before him? 3 Day and night I weep for his help, and all the while my enemies taunt me. “Where is this God of yours?” they scoff.

4-5 Take courage, my soul! Do you remember those times (but how could you ever forget them!) when you led a great procession to the Temple on festival days, singing with joy, praising the Lord? Why then be downcast? Why be discouraged and sad? Hope in God! I shall yet praise him again. Yes, I shall again praise him for his help.[a]

6 Yet I am standing here depressed and gloomy, but I will meditate upon your kindness to this lovely land where the Jordan River flows and where Mount Hermon and Mount Mizar stand. 7 All your waves and billows have gone over me, and floods of sorrow pour upon me like a thundering cataract.[b]

8 Yet day by day the Lord also pours out his steadfast love upon me, and through the night I sing his songs and pray to God who gives me life.

9 “O God my Rock,” I cry, “why have you forsaken me? Why must I suffer these attacks from my enemies?” 10 Their taunts pierce me like a fatal wound; again and again they scoff, “Where is that God of yours?” 11 But, O my soul, don’t be discouraged. Don’t be upset. Expect God to act! For I know that I shall again have plenty of reason to praise him for all that he will do. He is my help! He is my God!

 

 

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Maybe It’s His Dream…

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I recently moved with my family about 500 miles away from the home where we lived the past twenty or so years.  It was a terribly difficult decision to  make that involved a lot of tears, anxiety, anger, fear, and, I must admit, hope.    We left a place with a million meaningful memories that grew me into the person I am today.  Some of those memories are awful and and left deep battle scars.  Some are the most wonderful things I can imagine that are completely irreplaceable and bring a bring a sensation of joy and relief by their very thought.  As you can imagine, there is then everything in between.

We could have stayed where we were I suppose.  It would have been a very difficult life for us.  The job opportunities we needed just weren’t coming through.  But it would have certainly been easier on me emotionally…at least for a while.

Doors opened in other places-places 500 miles and more away from where my heart was attached to so many other hearts.  A difficult decision had to be made.  I have felt a bit like a traitor coming to this event. Maybe I gave up too soon.  I let money buy me out.  Everyone says follow your dream but my dream became a crumbling mountain that was eroding.   I caved in and I accepted another plan.  

Along the way, to make sure what we were doing was right, I opened my heart to God and I prayed that He would lead me and my family to a place of His will.   I prayed He would help us overcome our financial stress.  I prayed for opportunities to strengthen my family.  I asked for a direction that would help my family and maybe help others somehow.  I prayed all that through tears of hope that maybe that opportunity would be right where we were.  It wasn’t. 

So many “yeses” paved the way to where we are today at this moment.  It is the right place for us to be right now.  Our lives will be improved because we are here.  I don’t know what God has in store, but there were just too many signs that indicated this was the right thing to do.

My heart is still broken.  God didn’t take that from me.  He’s allowed my heart to be broken many times.   Those are the times when I come to Him as a tender child that needs to rely on someone greater than me- even greater than the people I’m surrounded by.   God holds my heart in His hands and He fits the pieces back together.  He fills it with more love, more faith, more caring, more joy, more peace, more blessings.  As with anything broken, it takes time for it to fully heal- to be fully engaged and ready to work at capacity.  That requires we lean on our Maker knowing He will get us to that point at the right time.  

I completely trust being 500 miles from so much that I love and miss is God’s plan.  I am taking a giant leap of faith, but I am certain I will land on firm ground.  Trusting and leaping does not make the pain less at the moment.  It does help me wake each day and say, I’m here for a reason.  Maybe today is the day I’ll begin to realize His dream instead of my own.  Maybe today is the day I’m less self-focused and I can see more clearly the opportunities around me.

 

Jeremiah 29:11 from The Message

I know what I’m doing. I have it all planned out—plans to take care of you, not abandon you, plans to give you the future you hope for.