Posts Tagged: loss

Sparrow Falls

Not Even Sparrows Fall: Suicide

Sparrows Fall: Suicide

Not even a sparrow falls without God’s knowledge and we are more precious than they. Oh, one day, I pray that I embrace this truth with the depth and security of one who trusts God no matter what I experience in this life. I’m not there yet. As the poem reflects this was a tear-streaked day. I have witnessed God’s care over and over, but I still don’t understand why he allowed Jonathan to die by suicide. Bottom line, I just want Jonathan here.

Turning My Page

I wanted your heart to heal from
the world’s unrelenting fists of hatred.
I tried to shield you, but their blows penetrated
to marrow. Broke bone and spirit without pity. They
meant to crush you—rob identity.
Rearranged home until
you no longer recognized love or belonging.

I thought if I cradled your heart
enough with my love, that somehow, someway
you’d emerge from despair.

But, control
of your rhythm was never mine. Your
soul was formed and shaped by a God
who knit you together in my womb.
On my knees I plead that His will be
done in your life—from beginning to end.

“DO SOMETHING!” I screamed at a
God who was not deaf to my desperation.

He comforted. He still comforts,
but I will not pretend to understand
why He didn’t rescue you.

Your future—my future—was never
mine to determine. And I pray
one day I walk this path knowing
that not even a sparrow falls to the earth
without God’s knowledge.

Your life mattered, and heaven
mourned you even deeper than I.

Turning Your Page: When Sparrows Fall to Suicide

You may have sparrows who have fallen in your life. Your mourning may be deep and waves of emotions swamp you.  Courage! May the promise of God’s care sustain you, even when the feelings simply are not there. You are precious to God. Your loved one was and is precious to a God who was willing to suffer with and for you. As you think about Easter consider the following:

  • “When we were utterly helpless, Christ came at just the right time and died for us sinners” (Romans 5:6, NLT).
  • “When He saw the crowds, He was moved with compassion for them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd” (Matthew 9:36, BSB).
  • “Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? And not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father” (Matthew 10:29, ESV).

Lord, this sorrow is too great. Carry it for me. Your tenderness and mercy towards my loved ones exceed my own and not one of them falls to the earth without your knowledge and mourning. Amen

 

Further Resources

Rob’s Kids is an excellent resource for children who have lost a parent.

 

God Gets Personal in Grief

So be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid and do not panic before them. For the LORD your God will personally go ahead of you. He will neither fail you nor abandon you.

Deuteronomy 31:6 NLT

Turning My Page

Creating New Memories

I didn’t look at the calendar–I knew it was May from head to toe. Grief is a seed also planted every year into my spring. It is a heaviness that grows when May begins. This year, as it did the first year after his death, Jonathan’s birthday falls on Mother’s Day. With my foot still misbehaving and quarantine my yearly tradition of hiking at the cemetery with my family may have to change. I felt angry that something that brings me good memories and joy would have to shift. I was tempted to give in to the anger and spiral down into despair.

I received cards this week from friends who know the difficulties of walking through the next three months. Thank you. I was especially struck by the quote in one card, Deuteronomy 31:6 because the NLT translation used the word “personally”. I love a God who gets personal in my grief because he reveals the truth of his character in my soul and lifts my head to see hope.

Today, he showed me the gifts he already is giving me in my first days of deeper grief. Saturday night I lay in a field at dusk with my family and watched the stars emerge. I didn’t want to go in! The delight of each star, the brilliant moon, and even catching a glimpse of the comet and Venus had me filled with joy. The symphony of sounds in the field soothed my heartache.

Sunday morning I let my husband have fun cutting my hair. I promise, he did a shockingly good job, Michelle! Each moment of joy and laughter reminded and testified to God’s deep love, compassion, and provision, for me. There is an undercurrent of movement of the Holy Spirit I never see with my head down. I must press into experience.

Pay no attention to the evil expression.

God gently nudged me to look up. See hope in this season of grief, and offer it to those who neither hear the voice of God nor see anything beyond the darkness of their circumstances.

I am weeping for any of you who only see the darkness and right now are contemplating suicide. Hope! I see you turning this page, and then another, and another. One day you will look back on the story God is writing into your life and say, “Wow! I see the stars. I hear the music through the darkest nights.”

I know there is a vast world beyond my brokenness and sorrow because God himself, is involved in my life. I promise he is personally involved in your circumstances.

Turning Your Page

You will have seasons you wonder where God is in your circumstances. Look up, don’t stop experiencing life, and allow others to speak hope and truth into your life. You may not yet feel the hope in your grief, but as you make yourself available to hope, you will not be disappointed.

  • What is one adventure you would like to take this week? Set up a time, location, and invite someone to experience with you and or hold you accountable to step into the moment.
  • Describe a part of nature that reminds you to hope. Try to use as many senses as you can to describe the experience.
  • Meditate on Matthew 6:25-34 What in nature can you consider as a display of God’s extravagant love, provision, and personal touch in your life.

Thank you Lord for getting personal in my grief. Lift my head from this pit that I can once again see the stars in their place, hear your presence in my life. Amen

Come over to my Facebook Page for our Facebook Live Discussion and question and answer time on intense grief.

A Mother’s Scream

Hold me Lord, as grief
empties me of child,
and yanks soul to the floor.
Cover my naked sorrow with
your lullaby of peace,
and drench me in your
tears of understanding.

Turning Your Page

“Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?”

Matthew 6:28, ESV

Life, as you expected, may have just crumbled. Tears. Jesus sobs with you. That loss you think he doesn’t care about, that you judge as God’s cruelness, heaven mourns. Not a sparrow. Not a sweet child leaves this earth without his knowing. Without his weeping the losss.

  • Who in your circle of influence is mourning a loss today? Cry with them. Hold them in the bone crushing shock of grief. Comfort with the comfort you have been given.
  • If you don’t yet know how to comfort another in their loss, slow down, study scripture, and ask God to guide you. Ask others who have grieved what brought them the most comfort.

Lord, teach my soul to mourn with those that mourn, and rejoice with those who rejoice. Amen

Sifted Box of Memories

The box of meaning is sifted, your fragrance

lingers

I’ve boiled off the excess and

let these treasures simmer

in my soul

weary

of searching for something missing

That never could

be boxed in.

45 MINUTES OF MISSING YOU

Blue Men and Women

conducted a BOLD LETTER search

for the little sheep hiding amid the pride of lions

while the mother feared she had been devoured

Layers of loss struggled to hope

Squawks of Marco

Polo volleyed

Until the hunters exhausted of the game

Silence

ticked by until the question must be asked

Is it time?

Almost, the faint reply

The vibration of a kindred searcher woke

the mother from her fears

“I have her”

relief rushed to restore order

She was laughing amongst lions

Oblivious of danger

Nor fragile with fear

Dusty Realities

Dreams–dusty realities

removing time and distance

Like a movement of dissidence, tucked into a symphony of

reason. You are a memory that makes no sense, resurrected by heartache,

sewn together by longing, until the persistent alarm shatters my dreams

to a heavy concrete world without you.

Turning the Page on Saturday: Embracing the Resurrection power of Sunday

“It is Only for the Weekend” was the sermon title at my in-laws church. God, who is not limited, doesn’t even operate in the limits of time, takes our circumstances whether good or bad and declares that they are temporary. Even death is now an unpredictable outcome for those who believe.

On our drive home Brian and I agreed that the heartache of missing Jonathan sure didn’t feel like only a weekend. “Feels like we are stuck on Saturday.” Brian said. Maybe your circumstances are like ours and you feel stuck in pain, your job, your life, your loss. The resurrection hasn’t happened or become an active part of our thinking, living, and dying. We are confused and reeling from plans not of our own making. We want to hide away, cry out, shake our fist at a God for allowing such agony into our lives. We would not map out the same path.

This is exactly how the disciples behaved after the crucifixion, the Romans guarded the tomb just in case the disciples tried to steal the body. They needn’t worry–the disciples were stuck on Saturday. When they started getting reports that Jesus was alive, most of the 12 did not go running to the tomb to confirm that it was empty and that Christ was indeed resurrected. They were in disbelief, and that was where they were likely going to stay if Jesus himself hadn’t walked through the door. I mean that literally, he waked through the closed and locked door.

Does Jesus have to walk through the closed and locked door of my heart for me to accept that his plan for my future is a good one? Or do I declare with my hands open to the heavens “BUT, SUNDAY!” The resurrection isn’t just an event that happened in history, it happens today when believers see the risen Christ in their lives and are transformed.

Lord, open my mind, heart, and soul to Sunday and help me to Turn the Page on Saturday! Amen.

Jarritos Memories

A bottle of memories

Sparkling with your laughter, sipped

slowly by my broken heart.

Silly sombrero on your head,

Inviting life with your dimpled smile

as cheeks puff to blow out candles.

I walk by the Mexican soda at the grocery store

and you make my sorrow smile.

Turning the Page no Matter What: Forming routine in the midst of crisis

1 John 1:1That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we looked upon and have touched with our hands, concerning the word of life— 2the life was made manifest, and we have seen it, and testify to it and proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and was made manifest to us— 3that which we have seen and heard we proclaim also to you, so that you too may have fellowship with us; and indeed our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ. 4And we are writing these things so that oura joy may be complete. ESV

My children have struggled to head back to school. Two weeks of being out, one of those weeks in a different time zone have wreaked havoc on their routine. They are grumpy, hyper, and testing the limits of bedtime and routine. Yet they need structure and order.

For that matter, so do I. Routine is vital in healing from the trauma of any kind. My son’s suicide has forced me to simplify (my brain simply cannot store any sort of useful information right now), to write notes, to weed my schedule down, and to limit my interactions with people who drain what little energy that I have.

My husband and I went into Christmas with a plan and it was a good one. It aided us in saying no when we needed to, guarding each other’s hearts, and in creating new memories to cherish Jonathan. God blessed and honored our commitment with surprises around every corner, reminding us of his presence with us! Thank you Lord.

The future spread out before me is daunting. I must take each day one at a time, just as Jesus did. Jesus knew he was headed toward the cross and he maintained a routine of prayer, scripture, fellowship, and witnessing. The burden of walking towards the cross was broken down into daily pieces that fit perfectly in God’s plan. The four spokes of the wheel illustration I mentioned in an earlier post, aren’t just nice ideas. They are the daily routine that keep us focused and reliant upon the will of God! As we are strengthened in each, the crosses we bear are not a burden in the light of his love and God’s plan for salvation. Lord, give me enough for today. Amen

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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.