Posts Categorized: grief

Jonathan’s Hope

Dear Reader,

Today I start a new page of my journey. My son’s suicide is a part of my story, and you too may suffer this deep heartache, but suicide doesn’t have to be a part of another parent, friend, or spouse’s story. We can Turn the Page on Suicide by being a light in the darkness.

In my sidebar is a link of resources that will now be named Jonathan’s Hope. I ask that if you come across anything that is making an impact in Turning the Page on Suicide, that you will send the link to me and I will add it to Jonathan’s Hope. I’m not in your community and I want the resources to be as local as possible. My hope is that we can build a network of hope across the country.

Thank you for working with me to Turn the Page on Suicide and offer hope to others like Jonathan.

Love and Hope to you all,

bkmoore

Frankenstein’s Snowman

Our longings are poured out.

Shaped into memories and crafted

moments with you. Built out

of snowflakes, Legos and

tears.  Bringing to life

our smiles.

Welcome, New Page Turners!

Dear Page Turner,

Today my page has been filled to the brim and running over. I wanted to take a moment to welcome the newcomers, thank you for your comments and support. As this blog grows it is my hope that it becomes a resource, encouragement, and lifeline to those effected by suicide and depression. Which, I am finding, touches just about all of us in some way. You may have a friend, loved one or even a complete stranger that you are concerned for. Don’t hesitate to reach out, be present, or sit with them. Be sure to vote in the poll I have set up. Your answers will help me to form content for new posts, and create resources for you as you engage those around you. Feel free to share it with your readers.

Continue to write your open page turners, I want to read what happens next.

Sincerely,

Karisa

Pictured Here is You

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Wall to Wall.”

My walls look so different now that I have a frozen teenager. I have no photo to change, no memory to add of Jonathan. I see the pain in his eyes, that no glossy smile can hide. In time, the rest of the photos will catch up and pass him by. Adult Daniel and Natalie smile back at me. . . grandkids laugh and play, but Jonathan’s photo has no update.

His growth is now captured in snapshots of how you and I live differently. Hang snapshots of love, forgiveness , generosity, and  hope on the wall of your soul–they are my new photos of him.

I Don’t Need Fifty Shades Of Grey: Just Give Me One-Of-A-Kind Black And White Love

I have had enough shades of grey in my life, it has left me lost, confused, afraid, and depressed. Seems to me that our world keeps trying to sell us cheap grey imitations of love when what we crave is black and white love! I have only found that kind of crisp, clear love in one place–the arms of my heavenly father. It may have involved a cross, but that was his choice for me, and again added depth and dimension to my life that is like nothing I have ever felt before. Agape love is unconditional, and it is something I can count on for a lifetime! Jesus’ love enables me to reach beyond my grief, to hold you, encourage you, and to keep writing my story no matter what. God’s love is not stored in a “room” for only a select few, but is sewn into the very fabric of creation. Look around you, it isn’t hidden!

Are you craving some black and white love? Check these verses out:

1 Corinthians 13

1If I speak in the tonguesa of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. 2If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. 3If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast,b but do not have love, I gain nothing.

4Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

8Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. 9For we know in part and we prophesy in part, 10but when completeness comes, what is in part disappears. 11When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me. 12For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.

13And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.

Romans 8

37No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 38For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons,k neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, 39neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

1 John 1

There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to
do with punishment.

Romans 5

And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.

Jonah 2

8 Those who pay regard to vain idols forsake their hope of steadfast love.

Psalm 52

8 But I am like a green olive tree in the house of God. I trust in the steadfast love of God forever and ever.

The Comfort of Silence

Silhouette of YouWhen words wither of comfort.

I snuggle into the warm blanket of silence

and sip a cup of tears

Until I curl to sleep, holding onto the memory of you.

1 Corinthians 10:31 So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.

Grief effects our health. It is important to hydrate (I find I get dehydrated more quickly), and eat foods that will encourage and strengthen our bodies. In the weeks after Jonathan’s death my back went out, I had a sever respiratory infection and had seizers that were triggered by insomnia. To say that my body was depleted and not strong enough to carry the load I now bore, is an understatement.

I don’t have much of an appetite these days, but the health choices that I am making are horrendous. You’d think, if you aren’t craving things, that it would be easier to make better choices. But, I went into grief with bad habits and they are now magnified. I have enough to deal with, without adding more pounds to carry.

What does it mean to eat to the glory of God? At its core is acknowledgment that man does not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God. (Matthew 4:4) Jesus had just completed 40 days of fasting, prayer and preparation for ministry. Satan tempted Jesus with food first because Jesus’ body was in desperate need of food. Jesus responded that man’s health does not come just from physical fulfillment.

Throughout scripture, there are so many examples of breakthroughs in the lives of Israel centered around food. Daniel and his friends were put in charge because they honored God by not defiling themselves with the king’s rich foods and their health was better than all of the other candidates. Jesus stated that there are some demonic forces that can only be cast out through prayer and fasting. There is power in what we choose to put into our bodies when it is to the glory of God.

Lord, I long to glorify you in what I eat. Father discipline me to bring scripture to mind when tempted. Help me to enjoy what is before me, and for food to no longer be a hindrance in living on every word that comes from you. Amen.

The Shortest Route through Grief

Turn the Page:

Proverbs 3:5-7Trust in the Lord with all your heart,
and do not lean on your own understanding.
6In all your ways acknowledge him,
and he will make straight your paths.
7Be not wise in your own eyes;
fear the Lord, and turn away from evil.
8It will be healing to your flesh
and refreshment to your bones.

Simple is a loaded word. It carries the weight of my desires, failures, and pleasures. I have complained a lot, through the years, when things break down, or seem to take too long. “Why can’t things be more simple?” Obviously, grief is no exception to the rule. We must go through it if we want to live life to the fullest. If there were a short cut through suffering and loss, I’d take it.

But scripture states clearly that there is! The shortest route between two points is obedience to God. For all of my complaining I am my own worst enemy when it comes to simplifying life. What makes my life more complicated is sin. I don’t want to go through suffering, so I have tried to avoid it, medicate it with alcohol, bad relationships, and running away or fighting my way through. None of which have ever worked. God has offered all of us a shortcut through Christ.

Since the moment the officer arrived on my doorstep with the nightmare of Jonathan’s death I have had a choice. Do I go through grief my way, or God’s way? He told us we would suffer and grieve in this life, but he also promised us that we would be comforted. The short cut is to love the Lord my God with all of my soul, heart, and mind. To lean not on my own understanding, but to acknowledge him in all my ways. God will make my paths straight!

By no means have I fully accomplished this, but it is my goal. When I accomplish the above command, I will go through this grief the shortest route possible and be comforted along the way to boot. Grief will be but a speck! It is when I disobey God and go my own way that things get more complex. Just ask the Israelites who spent forty years wandering through the wilderness when they had had God himself leading the way! If I want a shortcut through grief then I’ll keep my eyes on Jesus, the author and perfector of my faith.

New Mercies: A room of possibilities

Turn the Page:

Lamentations 3:21 But this I call to mind,
and therefore I have hope:

22The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases;
his mercies never come to an end;
23they are new every morning;
great is your faithfulness.
24“The Lord is my portion,” says my soul,
“therefore I will hope in him.”

Jeremiah the prophet knew how to mourn. He wrote a whole book on grief. Josiah, the one good king who tried to restore Israel to its faith, is dead. Not a single king after him follows God and Israel is plunged into political and religious decay. Jerusalem has Babylon knocking at its door and the surrounding verses reflect Jeremiah’s own personal grief. In verse 1 he states: I am the man who has seen affliction under the rod of his wrath. . .Like many of us he puts the bad in his life back on his creator. And certainly God allows bad things to happen in our lives. Babylon got in because Israel had long since turned their back on God.

Jeremiah was a reluctant prophet, shy and timid, and yet God used him to do mighty things. He certainly is living in difficult circumstances, but he reminds himself that God is not limited by our circumstances. He will give us a new day!

I mourned as I removed the pictures and things that made this originally Jonathan’s room (before we needed a pink room). I acknowledge the reality of my circumstances. This morning we start with a blank slate and the joy of blessing Daniel reminded me of all the spectacular new days that God gives before me. His mercies never come to an end!

So, as I grieve, as I paint, as I celebrate Daniel today, I remember that God is my portion and therefore I hope in Him!

Grief and Hope

Grief and Hope

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Suicide Hotline

National Suicide Hotline

If you or a loved one are in immediate danger, call the National Suicide Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 or go to the website at  SuicidePreventionLifeline.org.