Grief is just hard, and there is a lot of opportunity to get lost in it. I often want to succumb to those thoughts that can discourage and tear away the very hope of the cross, but God is so faithful to his children. I find that every time I'm there, God says to me "you do your part and I promise I'll do mine". He simply wants my trust, He's capable to do the rest.
One of my greatest comforts when I'm feeling so much pain at the loss of my beloved Jay is Psalm 34:18-The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. I take so much comfort in knowing that when I'm feeling broken hearted and crushed in spirit, that God's word tells me that He draws close to me. It's okay for me to melt, it's okay for me to stop--He understands.
So, speaking of crushed spirits, we're in the process of moving and although I've had more than a few months to prepare for this, it's all happening too fast. I can feel my heart breaking as the time draws closer and closer to our final day here...and why? It's just a house right? But the truth is that it's so much more than that. It's what Jay and I we we're building together.
I remember our first day here. It's a cute story to me; really warms my heart to think of it. We got the keys to our new home from the model home office. Jay was so excited and suggested that we run back home [to our old house] and grab one thing that was most important to us to bring into our new home for the first time. I didn't even have to give it a second thought. He didn't want us to show each other what we were bringing so when we got back to our old house we ran in, grabbed our items, and threw them in the car without each other looking.
When we drove to our new home, he shot up stairs and I eagerly ran back to the car to grab the most important thing I could bring into my new house. Anyone who knows me might guess exactly what it was--my Kitchenaide stand mixer of course!! I placed it in it's new spot, shinned it up a bit and said, "Welcome home baby"!
Jay came downstairs and got a big kick out of my selection but he wasn't surprised, he knew me too well. He then asked me to come upstairs to see what he brought. He took me up to our bedroom and on each side sitting on the floor where the nightstands would go, he had a framed picture of me as a little girl on his side, and a framed picture of him as a little boy on mine. This meant a lot to both of us because we always saw each other's vulnerable child inside. Jay so badly wanted me to protect him, and I so badly wanted protection as well. We relied on each other for this protection our whole young marriage, but what we didn't realize was that as we were turning a new corner, moving into our new home, this is where we'd grow up. This is where we'd stop seeing each other as children in need of help and instead become two adults who just wanted to rest together. When Jay passed away we were really enjoying life, enjoying our kids, and enjoying our home.
I guess there's really no way to go through this without pain. It's time to turn yet another corner, and with that comes the need to trust God's plan for my life. I miss Jay so much but I'm so thankful that I have my Lord who will guide me through this. He's so good to me, never abandons me, and He cares that I hurt.
Oswald Chambers says, "We are not made for the mountains, for sunrises, or the other beautiful attractions in life--those are simply intended to be moments of inspiration. We are made for the valley and the ordinary things of life, and that is where we have to prove our stamina and strength".
As I turn this corner and step into a new valley I take with me my moments of inspiration that God has given me on the mountain tops--and I know that He has so much more for me that will come in His perfect timing. But as I walk in the valley, I can reach into my pockets where I store all of my gold nuggets that God has blessed me with, and I can remember who I am. I'm His, and when I do my part, He doesn't let me forget it.
The day before New Years Eve my daughter Danielle and I went to the movies. As we came out of the theater I saw the side of one of those big movie posters that line the corridors, and the movie's release date was written along side of it. I said to my daughter, "Hey look, that movie is coming out on my birthday". She said, "isn't that the Captain America movie poster?" I told her I didn't think it was, but sure enough as we rounded the corner, that was in fact the case. There we stood staring in awe at this big poster with the Captain America sheild purtruding out of the front of it, and my birthday written underneath. I thought of Jay--our hero, Captain America. I could literally feel the warmth of God smiling on me. A precious little gift from my Father above, and I had yet another nugget to put in my pocket.
Packing up this house and turning a new corner is going to be very hard, and I'm going to have to reach into my pockets a lot. But my gosh my pockets are full! And they're full because I. Am. His.
"Thank you Lord for the full life I've had here, and for the full and complete marriage that you have blessed me, Jay, and my family with. You are so good, and my trust is in you. I'm so grateful that Jay's resting in the light of your glory". Amen
And this is the house that God built. "I love you Jay"