I teach an evening class. By the time the class is over, it is near the end of a very long day. As I walked to my car last week, I was mesmerized by the night sky. At first, I saw a turtle looking at the moon. Then I saw a dragon, trying to swallow the moon. That is the enchanting beauty of the sky, we can all see something different.
2 Corinthians 5:8
We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.
I should be happy for you, my Son – I guess that is what this passage is trying to tell me. That is a hard thing for me to process. You are absent from your body, but also absent from our lives. I know you are with the LORD, present before HIM. That must be glorious. At the same time, I know you did not want to leave your family and friends. I know being with LORD is wonderful – but I selfishly want you with me, with us.
GOD, YOU have my baby – I know he is YOUR precious child too. I believe, I know YOU love my baby– so please take care of him.
Help me to focus on the joy he is feeling being with YOU. Help me to understand. Basically, just help me.
This definitely does not get any easier. 30 month and 4 days – and it is still a pain that defies words.
Hold it in. Keep trying.
My prayers are with all who are hurting and struggling. Just keep holding on.
Today, this Lakota prayer for the dead shared by a friend comforts me – I pray it comforts others too:
May your songs of the winds and clouds sweep the pain and sadness out of my friends’ hearts; as they hear those songs, let them know the spirits who are with those songs are at peace.
It is unbearably hot here in Virginia. But the horses and goose and cat need care. I scrubbed the water trough and both goose pools. Everyone has fresh water and the barn fans are running.
And my head is pounding.
OK, I don’t want to run to the Excedrine every time I get a head ache. I am trying more natural remedies.
I turned off all the lights and relaxed for 20 minutes. I think that made it worse.
I drank a full bottle of water.
I drank a cup of coffee for my caffeine fix.
Still the little hammer is slamming away in my head. And still there are chores to be done.
OK, before I take the top off this Excedrine bottle, any other natural suggestions?
Sharing another one of my many favorite quotes from:
The Lakota Way: Stories and Lessons for Living by Joseph M. Marshall III
In the book, an older gentleman was speaking of death: “It doesn’t end here. It goes on in another place, on the other side….One doesn’t travel alone.”
This gives me great comfort today. I know my son is gone from ME in this place – but he is not gone. His spirit, his essence is “Going ON” in the presence of GOD – on the other side.
As I began my grief journey, lost in pain and confusion – I searched many Christian books for comfort. Book after book did not “speak” to me. Please understand, my faith in GOD never wavered. My love for Jesus never faltered. I simply did not feel nourished and comforted by these books. They were great books but they were not right for me and my journey.
I stumbled upon a Lakota author: Joseph M. Marshall III
I feel GOD led me to this author – HE knew best what I needed. I am grateful.
Mr. Marshall’s books speak to me – I feel the wisdom in his writings, first with Keep Going: The Art of Perseverance and then with The Lakota Way: Stories and Lessons for Living by and I hope many more.
In every chapter, every story, I find a treasure. I will not be fooled by Iktomi.
Today, I am sharing a favorite from The Lakota Way:
“When there are people in need, take their hands”
Simple and powerful – philosophy for life.
I saw a damaged, broken tree this week, with a huge base and three large trunk sections reaching up to the sky. It must have been a majestic, towering tree at one time. But not anymore. Lightning or some catastrophe of nature destroyed one of the large trunk sections. This left a gaping hole in the main trunk that allowed water and the elements to attack the inside of the tree. The tree, although still alive now, was rotting and dying inside.
That tree broke my heart and I could only cry. I wanted to hug the tree and say “I know how you feel. That is exactly how I feel.” Once, our family tree had three beautiful, strong, loving branches. A huge branch of our family tree has broken off – by catastrophe. The two remaining branches are mortally wounded – alive, but dying inside. Just like that tree, our exterior looks alive to all the world. We look like a fine, strong, family tree. But there is a gaping hole – a horrible wound – from which there is no recovery. Like the tree, we just go about our day to day life as best we can – but the damage, the pain is always there. We are a broken family tree.
I stepped closer to the tree, somehow wanting to emotionally comfort this tree. Then I saw it. In the midst of the tree’s pain and brokenness, there are two little buds, two beautiful, powerful little buds! There is hope, where there is the love of the GREAT SPIRIT – HOPE.
The tree comforted me!! Thank you, Brother Tree.