Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Nine Wednesdays

Monday marked two months since my Mama was called home, and just two days later marks nine weeks.  Nine Wednesdays ago today.  Two months seemed like a long time, but nine weeks seems so much longer to me.  It's amazing how only two days can make such a difference in my heart.

Monday I got the phone call from my dad that my mom's headstone is finally here.  Two months to the day after she went to be with Jesus it finally arrived.  I have been anxiously awaiting it to get here.  It's hard looking at the plastic grave marker and not being able to put a big beautiful bouquet of flowers there for her.  She loved flowers.  She loved getting them, and she loved when the grandchildren would pick them for her from the ones my dad had grown.  So I want her to always have a big bouquet of beautiful flowers.

As much as I have awaited the headstone to arrive, hearing it was here felt like a stab in the stomach.  Just another reminder this is real and it's forever.  I didn't expect it to be so hard.

Monday night I was given the gift of having a precious conversation with a beloved friend.  She lost her husband just a few short years ago.  As I was telling her the headstone had finally arrived, she shared with me how long it had taken her to order one for her husband.  Her exact words to me were, "It's awful it took so long ..."

I immediately told her it wasn't awful.  People grieve differently and not everyone goes through certain parts of the process at the same rate.  I explained to her I don't know if I could have ordered it so quickly.  Just sitting in the room flipping through books made the room spin around me.  But my dad was insistent on getting it ordered as quickly as possible.  I am so grateful he did, but I'm not sure I could have done it so soon.

What struck me during our conversation were the tears that began to stream down her face during our conversation.  It hit me that although it had become a little easier for her to get through the day to day activities of life, the wound in her heart was just as fresh as the day it happened.

Lord, thank you for showing me it not just  me.

My friend has a deep relationship with the Lord.  He is her everything.  She doesn't have to say it with her mouth, her actions scream it.  I've had the privilege of being in Grace group with her and her children.  The evidence of her children's hearts shows the teaching and the example she has been to them.  I know that I know she has sought and trusted the Lord in her grief.  So seeing her tears was encouraging to my heart that's it's okay to cry ... it's okay that it still hurts so much.  It's okay as long as I seek and trust the Lord in my grief.  I've been told just the opposite so many times over the past two months.

I was so tired and in so much pain that night, I almost sent my family to the graduation without me.  I didn't make the final decision to go until moments before leaving.  I am grateful the Lord gave me the willingness and the strength to go.  I wanted to go badly, but I was torn because of the way I was feeling.  Not only did I get to witness two young men who are very dear to my heart walk across the stage, I was also given the gift of having one of the comforting conversations I've had since my Mom's passing.

It's still going to be a few days before the headstone is set.  The people who are responsible for setting it told my dad yesterday they hope to have it done by the weekend, but they couldn't guarantee it.  It's going to be hard to see her name and date of death permanently marked.

But how joyous it is her name is marked permanently in the Lamb's book of Life!

Lord, help me to focus on the surety I have she isn't in that ground.  She's with you.

After leaving the cemetery last night I saw this in the sky.

Thank you, Lord, for such a beautiful reminder of Your promises.

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