Thursday, August 19, 2010
Faith That Is Tested
I had a good weekend visiting with my daughter and son-in-law in Houston. It was fun to see their home and their life together. The drive down there wasn’t as painful as it was the last time. I stopped and visited with 3 nurses that were with Joe’s oncologist. They seemed glad to see me and I was glad to see them. They were my friends during a very hard season. In some ways it seemed like home and was easy being there. As I was on the elevator a woman began to talk to me. As we exited the elevator I ask if I could pray for her. She was very thankful as she seemed in a daze from the long day and the news she had gotten.
As I begin another semester at my job, I wonder how God will fill in the void of not having Joe cheering me on in what God has called me to. Most people don’t realize how he was the “wind beneath my wings.” He was my prayer partner, confidant and was always there when I needed to verbally process. Frequently he would send me emails during the day telling me he was thinking of me, praying for me or that he loved me. I miss that. He was a huge support of the things God had called me to. Often times it is the other way around in ministry. Men are in that position and their wives support them. Joe was secure in his identity and we were a team. I have decided that I cannot look at making it thru a semester without him, I just have to wake up each morning, show up and leave the rest to God. I simply have to just look at making it one day at a time, one step at a time.
I have had several widows tell me that the second year was tougher than the first year without their husbands…that doesn’t sound fun and I hope my experience is different. The last several days I have been reading I Peter 1:6-7 which says,”In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. These have come so that your faith of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire- may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus is revealed.” Our faith is worth something. It keeps us steady in the storms of life and keeps us from drowning. There are a lot of Christians that have not yet had their faith tested. Is it what they say it is? What have they overcome in their lives or are they only talk? As much as I haven’t enjoyed some of the painful things I have recently suffered, I know they have shaped me and changed me. I refuse to waste the pain that has come in numerous situations and am learning to surrender to where I find myself, breathe and trust what I cannot see.
The wave of grief that hit around our anniversary is tremendous. The pain that life as I knew it is over has been unbearable recently. I had a friend that has been married a number of years say today, “you and Joe were in love and had a deep relationship that few have. I haven’t had that so I cannot imagine the loss.” That is more comforting than someone saying, “I know how you feel” because few do. There are many marriages that just share children, houses and live separate lives. If you are married, begin today to invest in each other. Affirm one another, honor one another, be best friends and share life. It is too short to lead separate lives.
Trusting, breathing, and holding His hand,