Another closing. Better yet, another new beginning. Year two of this new grief season of widowhood has come to an end. My beloved Joel departed this life for his eternal life two years ago today. On the one hand, it doesn’t seem possible it’s been that long. But, then there are the long days. The ones that make me want to pull my hair out, because they feel never ending. Oh…those days are long.
Even on those dreadful days, I find peace in the fact our time on this shattered earth is all too brief. Nothing in comparison to the beautiful infinity of Heaven which awaits my anxious soul. I long for those days of no more pain and no more tears. I long to reunite with both of my husbands and other loved ones who have gone before me. I long to see my Savior and worship my Heavenly Father with the saints who are already cheering me on from a vantage point I have yet to even understand. My finite mind can’t even begin to conceive of the joy that awaits me there. But until then…
I seek to live out joy on this earth. While many days, it’s hard to see how that’s even possible, I know it’s still there for the taking. And yet…it’s a choice. Joy is a choice. I can choose to be buried under the circumstances of this life and allow my weary soul to waste away to the point I am useless to the Kingdom while even still here on this earth. Or…I can choose joy in spite of my circumstances, knowing the life I have been given is still good. I. Choose. Joy.
Joel would want that for me. Chris would want that for me. My children need me to do that. My extended family and network of friends expect me to do that. And…my sweet Savior knows I can choose joy through Him. Only through Him. Outside of Him, I can’t imagine walking this Grief Road with unexplicable joy. The Author and Finisher of my life still has amazing plans for me, and I intend to walk out those plans with Him by my side, holding my hand, and even carrying me on the most difficult days.
I would be remiss to say those difficult days don’t weigh me down. They are so hard friends. So, so hard. They cause me to make rash decisions, poor choices, often leaving me feeling worse than I did before enduring those days. They cause me to question my purpose or God’s intention in allowing me to walk through this journey. But, He can take those questions. He can take my “why me?” moments. He can take my grief and bottles up every tear. He loves me that much!
- He loved me that much even as I laid my head on my newly deceased husband’s chest praying for another breath, knowing it wasn’t to come.
- He loved me that much as I drove home in the wee hours of the morning from the hospital, knowing I would have to share with my youngest kiddos that daddy had moved to Heaven.
- He loved me that much as He inundated me with a support system of heroes in my new town who loved on my family deeply during those first days, weeks, and months of walking this new Grief Road.
- And…He still loves me that much now, as I embark on another year of this journey.
And, so I press on! Year three is on the horizon, and I truly believe it will be a year of positive change with joy unspeakable. Will there be hard days? Absolutely! But, I know the joy I choose to find will be found, as I continue to seek His will. Goodbye year two. It was not wasted, even though it was hard. I am ready for the next steps of this journey!