Tuesday, August 2, 2011

In the Mourning

He's broken into a thousand little pieces and there's no way we can hold them all together.

The pain's cut deep, ripped him wide open, and we're all just standing here grasping about for words and comfort and courage.  Not just for him but us, too--the ones who watched while the fatal blow landed heavy, cold, unflinching.

The moments of silence, late at night--they're the hardest of all to bear when he's not here and we wonder if he'll come home safe, wonder if the nightmare's just waiting to begin.  It's then that I beg for mercy from the One Who holds us all and the broken ones nearer still.  It isn't just a broken heart that's in need of mending but a whole life, a spirit crushed hard into the ground. 

There's nothing I can do to stop all this bleeding.  No, this kind of healing only comes from the One Who heals us all.  And I try to stay here in the moment, stop bracing for what's to come.  Because there's no preparing for that kind of breaking anyway and God's the only One Who'll carry us through when it comes.

And we're in this together whether we want to be or not, and there are plenty of people all around who want to reach in and comfort with their words.  But they can't seem to find their way to the grieving place and there's no healing balm in the words that slip out, only salt in fresh wounds, hurt heaped on the head of the broken.

I've got a sister who's walking the grief road, too, and maybe her loss isn't the same as ours but we're fellow travelers nonetheless.  And she asks me the one question I've already been pondering for days.

Why can't the ones who watch the grieving just say "I'm sorry" and let that be enough?

I have no answers for her or me, but there's solace here in the company of those who grieve.  And I tell this sister of mine what I've learned through all these losses of a life.

It's a hard, hard thing to fight for our right to grieve.  But it's a fight worth having because this grieving--it's our only path to healing.

Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted {Matthew 5:4}

And I know this now in ways I couldn't have before:  There's no comfort for all these losses if we never choose to mourn them.

We're choosing to mourn but there's no shame in that.  And we haven't lost our Hope at all because we're counting on Him to heal what's been broken beyond repair.  My sister starts a list in the middle of her grief, counting on Him a thousand times over to hold her pieces together.  And she says it's me who's inspired her to move forward like this, but she's the one who reminds me there's only one way to mourn these losses and let the Comforter find us where we've fallen.

It's with the heart bowed low and the hands opened wide to catch everything He gives, breathing thanks through all the pain, waiting expectantly for His healing to come.

We're breathing and we're waiting.  And God?  He's coming to bind us up and fill the empty spaces with the only thing we need to be healed--Himself.



1049.  Loved one coming home safe one more time

1050.  God who's near when the fear presses in

1051.  Knowing He'll carry us through even the worst kind of loss

1052.  Sister-friend who begins her thanks in the middle of the grieving

1053.  Promise of comfort for those who mourn--for me, for us, for everyone who has lost

1054.  New-found friend who speaks of the Christ Hope blooming in me

1055.  Day after day of sunshine, summer finally here to stay for awhile

1056.  Steaks on the grill, green beans roasting in the oven

1057.  Ice cream on the porch after dinner

1058.  Windows open, cooler air trickling in

1059.  Iced chai on a friend's sunny deck

1060.  Dog rolling happy in the grass below us

1061.  Amaryllis getting ready to bloom in August, a sign of hope for a weary heart

10 comments:

  1. "Why can't the ones who watch the grieving just say "I'm sorry" and let that be enough?"

    Oh how i understand this!!!! I know they don't mean to, but so often their added comments only add pain to grief. And all I can do is *sigh* But I will add you and your sister to my prayers

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  2. Courtney. I know oh so well where you and your sister are. I just want to encourage you that the Lord is SO with you both in the middle of this. He never wastes anything that He allows in our lives especially our mourning. You both are in my prayers my sister-in-Christ.

    Romans 5:1-5,

    Daniel Farrow

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  3. I love you deeply. I am so sorry. I want you to know that we walk this road together.

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  4. "I try to stay here in the moment, stop bracing for what's to come. Because there's no preparing for that kind of breaking anyway and God's the only One Who'll carry us through when it comes."

    Thank you for that; it is wisdom my fear-prone heart needs to start the day.

    I'm sorry for your loss and grief. May the Lord make real to you His nearness and goodness.

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  5. @Our Family: Thank you so much for your prayers...it is a comfort to know that we are not alone in the grieving experience. And I suppose, along the way, we are learning "what not to say" to others who are grieving, so maybe all is not lost? Thank you again for praying.

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  6. @Lover of Christ: Thank you for your sweet words of encouragement and your prayers. God *is* with us who grieve and I can never be reminded of that too often. Thank you.

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  7. @Clumsy Girl: And I love *you* deeply. It is a privilege to walk beside you on whatever road we are taking. You are a blessing to me, dearest friend. May you find the strength to keep grieving and may His comfort heal you in the most unexpected ways.

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  8. @tinuviel: I have a fear-prone heart, too. Thank you for reminding me that these words I've written aren't just for the one huge fear that stalks my family in this moment but for all the fears that taunt and paralyze in this life. May He strengthen you with courage to face whatever lies ahead and may you rest in Him, knowing that He'll be the One to bring you through even the hardest of days. Grace to you, Friend.

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  9. Knowing He'll carry us through... where would we be without our precious Savior?

    nice to meet you! Found you @ Ann V. blog!

    Love, Traci @ Ordinary Inspirations
    http://www.ordinaryinspirations.blogspot.com

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  10. @Traci Michele: We'd be lost, so very very lost without the One Who holds us together.

    Wonderful to meet you, too! Thank you so much for stopping by!

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