I have read at least 10 books on grief over these past few months. I am somewhat of an expert, not on grief, but on what others say about grief. But I find that each book leaves me with the same questions I started with. I am gaining a whole bunch of head knowledge on how to live, survive, and make my way through this catastrophic loss. But my broken heart sometimes has trouble letting the knowledge of my head into the crevices, the dark protected places of my broken heart. There is a disconnect between what I know and believe, and what I feel.
Beth Chapman, who tragically lost her 5 year old daughter, puts it like this. “And then, all of a sudden, I hear this other voice in my head that reminds me over and over again of not what I feel, but what I know. It might on certain days be buried deep down in my heart and have a hard time computing to my brain, but here is what I know and what I choose to believe, over and over again. I know God loves me and my family. I know God is sovereign and He knows what is best for us. I know he has our days numbered and makes no mistakes. I know that He will bring beauty from ashes. That is what I cling to in order to make it through another twenty-four hours.”
I am learning, on my grief journey, that I have to choose to believe, daily, moment by moment. Cling to what I believe as if it’s a life line, because it is; my soul’s life line! I cannot base my beliefs on how I feel in this trial of faith. I must choose to believe over and over and over. I am not saying that I no longer believe in a loving, good God. I do! But my belief in His loving kindness, goodness and mercy towards me, while not shattered, are challenged daily in this fiery trial. So everyday, on this battlefield of grief, I must choose again to believe and never give in to the temptation of allowing my feelings to dictate what I believe to be true!
It should be noted, I am not choosing to believe because it is a positive perspective about the future. I am not holding onto hope out of some innate sense of optimism. I am grabbing hold of the promises of God and refusing to let go because they are an anchor for my soul, keeping it secure.
Hebrew 6:18-19 “…to take hold of the hope set before us…We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure…”
So, I choose to believe today, and I will take hold of God’s promises again tomorrow, regardless of how I feel. Its the only thing that makes it possible for me to grieve with hope…
I don’t know what other way we could live but to grab hold of His promises! Life isn’t fair (something Don tells me often when I wrestle with things) and it surely isn’t for the faint of heart. But I do know that with God all things are possible and that someday you and I will be standing on heavens shores rejoicing with our Savior and our precious loved ones. As I was reading Hebrews 6:18-19 this hymn came immediately into my mind. I don’t know if it is familiar to you but here are the words and this was the best rendition I could find online – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dAJbdqyu-1E Love and hugs to you my dear sweet friend!
Will your anchor hold in the storms of life,
When the clouds unfold their wings of strife?
When the strong tides lift and the cables strain,
Will your anchor drift, or firm remain?
We have an anchor that keeps the soul
Steadfast and sure while the billows roll,
Fastened to the Rock which cannot move,
Grounded firm and deep in the Savior’s love.
It is safely moored, ’twill the storm withstand,
For ’tis well secured by the Savior’s hand;
And the cables, passed from His heart to mine,
Can defy that blast, thro’ strength divine.
It will surely hold in the Straits of Fear—
When the breakers have told that the reef is near; Though the tempest rave and the wild winds blow,
Not an angry wave shall our bark o’erflow.
It will firmly hold in the Floods of Death—-
When the waters cold chill our latest breath,
On the rising tide it can never fail,
While our hopes abide within the Veil.
When our eyes behold through the gath’ring night
The city of gold, our harbor bright,
We shall anchor fast by the heav’nly shore,
With the storms all past forevermore.
I do love that song. ANd you are right…life is hard. So hard sometimes. But then I imagine if it weren’t we wouldn’t long for Heaven the way we do. Hugs friend ❤