Peace for the Week/Weak

Peace

Dear Hurting Soul,

It has been an emotionally gut wrenching week. Everything that seemed to be good and right has been toppled and turned. The letting go of things you weren’t ready to say good-bye to causes a deep gnawing pain in your belly. The betrayed trust at the hands of those you loved. Old wounds opened.

In only been a week…and I feel nothing but weak.

How quickly and easily I trade what I know for what I feel. How easily I let the truth of His word be drowned in the barrage of worldly words. I trade my first love for the approval and acceptance of the world. And my heart breaks, because this world just cannot fill those cracks that bleed or soothe the bruises that hurt.

The world, in spite of the all-inclusive rhetoric never really just accepts… it just judges and dictates what should have, could have, or ought to have been… and it’s never good enough, never strong enough, never right enough. Just never enough.

But it’s spring. And that glorious Good Friday will be here soon with the celebration of the Son’s resurrection and overcoming of all things toppled and turned and the true all-inclusive bread of life and the water that will satisfy. The relentless pain will ease and I will bask in the truth that by His stripes, my cracks and wounds and bruises are healed.

Is your soul aching? Parched and dry by the constant struggle to keep up, to be enough. Take rest today dear tender soul and let the healer soothe with the balm of His love and the sweet, sweet truth that you are enough.

I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart! And the peace I give isn’t fragile like the peace the world gives. So don’t be troubled or afraid. John 14:27

Spring Thaw

The earth breathed a collective sigh today. Spring made a peak from behind the clouds and brought sunshine and warmth to the cold, hard ground. Winter has seemed especially long and cold this year, and I know I have had it easy living here in the south compared to my more northern friends.

Does your heart ever feel that way? Like it has been living in a perpetual winter and it seems that the storms and clouds won’t go away long enough to thaw.

And then you exhale. Like someone who has been holding her breath too long for fear of the next cloud that will burst, you exhale. And you feel it… the warmth of spring. The warmth of the yellow rays of sunshine and the sweet scent of new blooms and buds in the air. And there is hope. And joy. And peace.  Remember this moment, this feeling of life being breathed back into you.

ice_pansy_crop_430

Winter came that year when everything changed way too and way much too fast. The year of the diagnosis and hospitals and doctors. The year of going back to work full time. The year of having three teenagers all at the same time, and life… life just fell apart. And that year… well it just kept going into the next and before I knew it, there I was in a place I didn’t know my heart could go. Frostbitten, so cold and burned, and knowing I couldn’t take another step further or I might never find my way back.  So I breathed deeply and turned around.

Exhale. A deep breath and a pleading sigh.

In the same way the Spirit also joins to help in our weakness, because we do not know what to pray for as we should, but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with unspoken groanings. Romans 8:26

And God answers. The storms subside and you take a breath. Just for today. And again tomorrow, God answers and you take a breath and it is enough for that day. Until your days turn to weeks, then to months and you find yourself warm and the sun is on your face and the cold wintery places in your heart are thawed. You know that winter will come again, but next time…next time you won’t hold your breath. You will breathe deep and exhale, because next time you will remember this warmth and know that spring is around the corner and the warmth of The Son is still there, just behind the clouds.

Whatever it is you are facing today my sweet friend, take comfort in the knowledge that spring is coming. Exhale deeply tonight and hear the whispers of the Father warming your heart.

spring_10

Compassion for the Hurting #1000speak

For the person who just needs to know that this life they are living has value. For the parents who are watching their child slip into a world of pain and darkness.  For the young woman who struggles to get out of bed and face yet another day.  For the man who is losing his hope for the future.  For all of you standing in the perpetual storm, there are those of us who have walked through it too and with compassion and love, are reaching back to walk along side of you.

This is a previously shared story of my family… my daughter.

Compassion

The mother and daughter walk along the beach where the water just meets the sand.  Her hair is in pig tails and the brightly colored pail is gripped tightly in her tiny hand as she gathers shells to fill it.  I hear the mother tell her, “Don’t get the broken ones… only the pretty ones.”  I gaze at my own daughter, a young woman now, her usual blonde locks now colored “Ariel Red” as she bends to examine shells for her own collection.  She is pretty, so beautiful… yet so very broken.  Today she is content and her heart seems at peace.  The marks on her wrist serve as visible reminders of the pain she feels in the depth of her soul.  A pain so deep and unrelenting that my eyes sting with tears every time I think of it.  Some of the scars are healing, some more red and angry and my heart feels as if it could burst because I want to make it better.  I long to go back to a simpler time when a scrapped and bruised knee could easily be fixed with a kiss and a Band-Aid.  A time when I could rock her to sleep, tickle her back “sof-y-ly”, and soothe the hurts that she can’t express.  The sharp, jagged edges of her broken places hurt me often and my mother heart longs for her to remember how cherished she is.  I plead with God to heal her heart and He reminds me gently of how broken I too am, and of how much He loves me even still.  Brokenness… it can be pretty; quite glorious and amazing even.  Christ was broken for me and there is no other picture of perfection and beauty that can compare.   I cry out in my frustration daily, but I know my Father sits patiently and listens with a tear in His eye, because He also knows the pain of watching your child suffer.

 

I am so tired and am learning to trust in God daily for strength.  She is broken, just as I am, just as you are, just as this crazy world we live in is.  Yet, she is so beautiful.  She is so much more than this moment in her life.  She is gracious, compassionate and giving, and that part of her being is seen in her love to serve and help others.  Her passion is to sing and dance and perform and she has been generously gifted by God with these talents.  I know He has great plans for her in this world.  Plans to show others His mercy and love through her own actions.  I pray she finds herself and that she can see herself, not through my eyes, but through the eyes of her heavenly Father where she is made whole through Christ.  Jesus took all of those broken pieces with their sharp edges when he died on the cross for her and he miraculously put them together the day he rose from the tomb.  She is perfect.  She is my daughter.

 

Romans 8:28
Meanwhile, the moment we get tired in the waiting, God’s Spirit is right alongside helping us along. If we don’t know how or what to pray, it doesn’t matter. He does our praying in and for us, making prayer out of our wordless sighs, our aching groans. He knows us far better than we know ourselves, knows our condition, and keeps us present before God. That’s why we can be so sure that every detail in our lives of love for God is worked into something good.

 

 

So we continue to amble slowly and quietly along the shore and pick up shells; whole shells, fragments, and pieces in all shapes and colors.  They are all “pretty ones” as they are all unique and the broken pieces tell the story of a life lived.  A story of having met challenges and struggles head on and of having survived and made it through those difficult times a stronger person.  As much as I want to, it’s not up to me to put all of the pieces together.  I just have to love every piece and part of her and rest in the comfort of knowing and trusting that my Father will take care of the rest.

As a follow up, my beautiful child will graduate high school in  a few months and has been accepted to the college of her choice.  I am so thankful for those who showed compassion and love to my family and to my girl as they walked us through this time.

https://otherwordsdotnet.files.wordpress.com/2015/02/compassion.png