A while back, I posted a blog https://kandynolesstevens.com/2013/09/09/i-cry/. The blog wasn’t difficult to write, but it was agonizingly hard to post. The shed tears were real. More salinated drops fell for some points, especially the ones for my children, than others. In the end, it was cathartic to write, because in doing so, the “monsters” don’t seem so threatening anymore. It is as if with each keystroke God allowed me to replace my sadness. Well, actually it isn’t replacement so much as relinquishment to the foot of his throne.
Why is the writing of such posts a beautiful process while the sharing of them such a challenge? At times, I feel like a modern-day Jacob wrestling with God. There are plenty of things that I write that are not published, but this time I had an overwhelming sense God wanted me to share my tears publicly.
I know I cannot circumvent the reality that losing a child is horrifyingly painful. Add to that raising injured and grieving children, and my pain at times feels like pulling back layers of an onion. Every time, I shed one layer, there is just another eye-stinging layer below. I get tired of removing layers. So much so the sharing of them with others becomes less and less interesting to me. I just don’t feel that broadcasting my pain is valuable other than to show my pain and weakness, not mention my doubts and failures. What good comes from that? Where is my purpose? Is this really God’s plan?
It is a good thing my ways are most definitely NOT God’s ways, because He continues to remind me I couldn’t be more wrong. As I was writing, “I Cry” I received a call from my sweet friends down in Kentucky. They went out to dinner and felt something was missing in the gathering. That something was their “Angel Girl” whom God brought into their lives this summer. I could “join” them as they passed the phone around the table. When the phone made it to Miss E, she shared that she didn’t understand why but felt that God wanted me to know that He would be replacing my clothes of despair with a garment of praise. She had no idea what I was writing at the exact moment my phone rang. I could barely choke out an audible syllable as her words bathed my soul in God’s love. She (through God’s prompting) gave me the exact words to share in my post. A message of hope, when in truth, I needed a good reminder.
And if I needed more proof, which I didn’t, God provided it. Within ten minutes of the blog posting, I received three messages (e-mail, text, and phone call) from dear, dear friends who said through their tears how thankful they were for someone to put into writing what their hearts were holding back. In only God’s intervention, my words became an anthem for others to be rocked gently by the continued message of hope. My heart’s desire is to honor God with everything I do. Slowly He is teaching me that the road to achieving that goal may be filled with bumps and bruises AND the sharing of them with others.
I don’t have to be the poster child for grief. Yet, in my most vulnerable moments, He has used my writing to reach out to the souls of others; thereby reclaiming my mess and making it a message. I never intended for my faith to be on display during our darkest moments, but that very faith that has sustained us. A life blood filtering from the one who shed his blood.
There has been a long lull between posts. The silence was not wasted. In the quiet time since my last post, I have used this time to literally be still, finding peace and rest in the arms of my Savior knowing that He does have a plan for all of this. I pray each and every day that He helps me to see it.
As I have shared in many previous posts, sometimes that message of love and hope for my life comes to me in a song. This time it came in the melodies of one of my favorite groups: Sidewalk Prophets. Their lyrics, like the words from my long-distance friends, touch me like God himself had them written just for me. Awed and humbled, I know if God can use the darkest moment of my life, He can for you too. Simply trust – He already has a plan in place.
From → Faith Family Football