I sit to write this morning with a very heavy heart. My heart is filled with sadness for many who are suffering with grief or illness as we head into this holiday season.
I found out yesterday that my cousin's son and daughter in law buried their baby yesterday. I don't know many details, but their baby, Grace was stillborn at close to full term. Of course my heart is broken for them and for C., my friend at My Resurfacing that I have spoken of before, who's due date is approaching, who's baby Callum was born still at 34 weeks. Through her I have found so many other women who are suffering similar losses and every time I read one of their stories, my heart is ripped open a little wider. I pray for peace and hope for these families. The hope and assurance that I will one day hold my baby in heaven is truly what got me through the darkest moments of grief.
Some of my blogging friends are worried about loved ones who are suffering with cancer, my heart goes out to you. (My heart is aching for you Badness) This horrid disease affects every family it seems, I have lost some very close relatives to it and to diabetes, and my mil is a breast cancer survivor. I pray for strength and healing for your relatives and strength and peace for you my friends, as well as lots of time with your loved ones.
One of my close girlfriend's husband lost his Grandfather this week to cancer, her boys played with mine as their parents went to the hospital. Last night she was sharing with me how God was merciful to Grandma in allowing the Grandfather to go through the very last stage of death quickly and relatively peacefully. My friend is a nurse and she was telling me that sometimes the last gaspings of death can be quite prolonged and noisy and can be disturbing to the family. As Grandfather went into this part, my girlfriend said that Grandma seemed disturbed by it so she prayed it would pass quickly and my friend was thankful for God's mercy in this area.
It seems like every day I am confronted with the stories of strangers in tragedies and my heart is repeatedly broken as I think of the grieving families left behind. There was a woman and her four children from Prince George, all killed when their vehicle hit a semi. My heart goes out to her family and to the driver of the truck who also must be grieving. It seems so senseless and awful, I just pray that God will comfort the family and friends, offer them some hope in this hopeless time.
My mom's friend suffered a tragedy in his life last month. His wife's son has been very troubled and was at the end of his rope. He went out in his car and was involved in an accident where he and the other driver were both killed. The other driver was his mother. So this poor man lost his wife and stepson in one horrific accident. All I could think was, "Why God?" Then I reminded myself that there is no why that I need to know. We have choices we make and sometimes the consequences are horrific. I am so sorry for these losses. God, please offer comfort to this man and his family, some easing of their suffering, some hope of a better future. I guess God has answered this in a way for him as he has been spending time with his new baby Granddaughter this week.
I do not tell you about all these people who are suffering with grief to depress you. But I have been reminded over and over again to look beyond my snug little life to those who are in need around me. It is easy for me to be caught up in the joy of the season and forget the great pain of those I come in contact with. It is easy for me to get caught up in what I perceive as my own 'suffering' as I go through my day to day life, complaining of little annoyances, being irritated with my children (who are my greatest joy and blessings) or circumstances.
I don't want to forget to savour each moment with my family and friends. Life can be so fleeting. Children grow quickly. Tragedies take place in the blink of an eye. Healthy children and parents are blessings to be thankful for.
And, as a woman who believes in the power of prayer, who believes in a loving God who has all of us in his hands, it is my duty and privilege to spend time on my knees for those who are suffering and in need. Don't let me forget all those who are mourning and those who are ill, I am thankful that God is reminding me of those who need His love and making my heart soft to their stories. To be very honest, it had been a long time since I actually spent time in prayer for people outside my immediate circle. I often thought about it, but didn't actually get around to it, so caught up in my own life and selfish needs and desires. I am truly thankful that God is opening my heart to those around me again, my achy heart a constant reminder of the pain other's carry.
I used to be very sensitive to others in that way, very empathetic. But years of struggling with postpartum depression and leading a self-centered, selfish life had deadened me a bit to the emotions of others. I think I prefer being this way. I cry a lot more tears, but they feel so cleansing and real.
I feel like I am doing a real hack job on this post, I really felt like sharing what was on my heart, but it is not coming out right.
Please hug your family and tell them you love them. Remember how fleeting these moments are, the good and the bad. Please give a hug or say a prayer for someone who is suffering or in need, I know you already do:)