Monday, August 30, 2010

My right hand...

I tend to raise my right hand as I am in worship at church, sometimes in my car, sometimes when I just need to reach out to God in the middle of the night.  I raise my right hand, rarely my left.

I did a quick search on of "right hand" and there were over 100 mentions in the Bible.  It seems God's right hand is one of unwavering might and strength, powerful enough to lift us out of the most dire circumstances.

I find myself in such a miry pit.  There are no sides to hold onto.  Even if there were, I don't have the strength to pull myself out.  I'm too far in for my friends and family to reach in, though they would do anything to take my pain away.  They cannot.  No one on this earth can save me.  Not even one. 

So I lift my right hand straight up from the pit.  Fingers spread apart with a sparkle coming from my beautiful wedding bands that I no longer wear on my left hand. 

I reach for God.

I can't always feel Him.
Sometimes I doubt.
Sometimes I just cry and clamor just to make sure He can hear me.
My arm gets tired.
I want to put it down and sink.
I felt that way today, and yesterday, and I'm sure it won't be the last time over this long journey.

Yet, God never lets go.  He never lets go.  So I guess that means I can't sink, though sinking sure would be the easier way out.

Ps. 73:23-26:  "Yet I am always with you; you hold me by my right hand.  You guide me with your counsel, and afterward you will take me into glory.  Whom have I in heaven but you?  And earth has nothing I desire besides you.  My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever."

Dearly loved,

Wednesday, August 18, 2010


I have a 2 by 4 piece of wood sitting on my desk in my parents' living room. It is no ordinary piece of wood, for it is adorned with duck tape and is actually 2 pieces of wood glued, screwed and nailed together. Written in one corner is "Romans 8:38-39."

"For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to seperate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord."

Our good friend Scott, who so amazingly spoke at Tony's memorial service, brought the wood piece to me after it was used as a part of a sermon at Buckhead Church a few weeks after Tony died. The point of the sermon was that no matter what bad or good things come at us in life, nothing, NOTHING, can seperate us from the love of God. Those 2 pieces of wood permanently stuck together represented that.

The wood certainly does not match my mother's beautiful decor in their home, yet its meaning is a lifeline to me. It speaks of the word "convinced."

For I am convinced that God's love is with me. Always. Forever. matter my joy and bliss, nor my deep sorrow and pain.
Convinced...on the day Tony proposed and on the day Tony departed from this earth.
Convinced...whether life makes sense or never does again.

Nothing will seperate me from the love of Christ. Nothing.

Settle that in your own hearts, my dear friends. Though God's love doesn't promise to take away your pain or guarantee a happy life, it is the only promise I will stake my life on.

Dearly loved, and convinced,

Monday, August 9, 2010

My mission field

Tony was my mission field. That was one of the first things I learned in our pre-marital counseling. Our counselor told us that we were to be each other's mission field, to view each other through the lense of a servant's heart, and that as we did that, our spouse's faults and mistakes would always be covered in love.

I miss my mission field. I feel so lost without it. I loved serving Tony. No, I was not a perfect wife by any stretch, but I can look back and see in our marriage that my thoughts about Tony's best interests and needs were always weaved into my day. The way I served him was only a fraction of the love and servanthood he poured out so extravagantly on me.

I could have been so happy fulfilling my mission as Tony's wife for the rest of my life. That was my "Plan A."

Life did not pan out the way I thought it would, so I'm left to determine "Plan B."

I sat in church last week in tears once again. The message was about lifting others up and asking God to give us eyes to see needs around us. I am fully on board with that, so I asked God to just give me a glimpse of what my Plan B mission might look like.

Later that week, He began to birth a new vision, a new mission, in my heart. Though I have a very limited view, I can see it is God-sized and one to rise up over time from the ashes of my Plan A.

For now it is just that, nothing concrete, and nothing to share specifically. Those of you who continue to pray for me, please pray that God unveils this Plan B in His timing, in His way, and that it would be completely of Him and nothing of me.

I just want to live my life "on mission"...whatever that mission may be.

Dearly loved, in Plan A and Plan B,

Monday, August 2, 2010

A rainbow in a rainstorm

I drove through a horrible rainstorm last night. My final 20 miles to home were met with deep blue rain clouds that gave the phrase "the bottom fell out" a whole new meaning.

Just when I thought the rain could not come any stronger, it did. Incessant drops pounded and pounded, harder and harder. I could barely look anywhere but straight ahead for trying to make out the blurring brake lights in front of me. That was until the dreaded stand still traffic ensued on the interstate. As I came to a hault, and I started to grumble, I looked up and there it was.

A rainbow.

Yes, a rainbow. Not a rainbow after a storm, like God gave to Noah. Instead, it was a rainbow in a storm.

Though faint in color and only half could be seen, it was enough to be a rainbow just for me.

My current life feels like a rainstorm, one I never saw coming, a thief in the night. The rain pours down harder and harder, pounding my worn-down body, pounding my battered spirit, pounding my aching heart.

And yet, there in the midst of my rain clouds is a rainbow, my ray of hope from the Lord. It is a promise that though this world unleashes unrelenting rain, my God holds eternal sunshine in the life yet to come. And that life yet to come is void of pain, and of tears, and of loss.

It says in Revelation 21:4 that in heaven, "He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away."

I cling to these verses as my umbrella of hope.

Traffic picked up after a few minutes, but I kept trying to keep one eye on the rainbow as I drove (a little less dangerous than texting while driving, right?). It faded away as I encountered even darker storm clouds and more heavy rain.

Though I could no longer see it, I knew that rainbow and that promise was still there behind the storm, waiting to see me through on the other side.

Dearly loved, in the rain,