I was just going to include “Why Malina” on the website, but because the loss of a loved one is so all consumi]]> I hope it helps. Time helps a little, but the Lord helps a ]]> But even He can’t take all the pain away. Life as we know it will never be the same and it wasn’t meant to be. You may want to read “Why Malina” first.
Lamar and ]]> Or was it yesterday? It seems so long ago and yet there will always be that tender place of tears. But I remember a ti]]> I have the tears now because God has taken out my heart of stone and given me a heart of flesh. I have known both and I prefer the tears. They are a r]]> Sometimes when I give my testimony people mistake the tears to mean I have not gotten passed my grief but I have. I just revisit it for them. I can honestly say I have peace and joy where there was mourning and pain. I don’t have to go there any more. I choose to for others and I really don’t mind.
Your loss is much closer to you than mine is now. Many people say time heals these wounds and I know it does but I know that it is God that brings the healing not time. I have met women who have lost a loved one a long time ago and haven’t found much peace or joy. It is God that does it. But we must allow it. It is a struggle. Going again and again for help when you hit a snag. There are phases to your healing. It is not a one time “touch”. It is many touches. Many things God wants to reveal to you on your way to wholen]]> It is intertwined with the victory in other areas of your life.
]]>It is important to understand this is not Heaven. The point of life is not for you and your family to walk happily into the sunset. The point of life is for as many as possible to get to Heaven. God makes choices with this in mind. In my case my little girl, Dadra, was ready to go and we were not. She told me just weeks before she died, “I love God. Grant doesn’t love God but I love God.” (Grant loves God now too.) My family was very dysfunctional with no way for God to help us. I wasn’t “saved” and therefore didn’t have my receptor on. Lamar was “born again” but backslidden.
And so after a few years, God made a difficult choice. If God never made these choices and we arrived in hell, we would ask Him why He let us go on without any warnings or stopping us along the way? Dadra’s death was God stopping me and my family on our downward plunge. Not just to hell but to dysfunction and maybe divorce. Because He is a loving God, He makes these choices. Not always because we don’t know Him; sometimes He allows it to get us involved in a ministry or reaching out to a community in a special way. I feel someday God will show you why this has happened, but maybe not today.
MADD and SADD came about because of a tragic loss. It is sad that our communities have the drinking and drug abuse and it is even worse that we do so little to stop it. Christians should be more involved. God allows tragedy to stir our nest. To force us to reach out, to get answers. Each loss is different and God has a plan because of it or in spite of it. We can’t cubby hole or label these things. Only God can show you the reasons. I do feel eventually you will understand.
I wish I could tell you there is an easy answer. There isn’t. I do want you to know each day you can have peace. All I can say is take it one day at a time. You aren’t sad because you don’t have the person this minute or this day. You are sad because you looked into all your tomorrows and realized he or she would not be there and that makes you very sad. You looked back and saw all your yesterdays and remembered how special they made them. You are faced with what was and what will never be. That is the source of your sorrow.
Today is O.K. You can manage to make today O.K. and maybe even special. And so that is where you must live – in today. You must not look forward or back. Living one day at a time. Like an alcoholic has to do. Actually, this is the way we are all supposed to live. The Bible says we have no guarantee of tomorrow. Our loss forces us to live the way we should have been all along. Corrie TenBoom, who lost most of her family in the German death camps said, “I hold all things lightly because it hurts when He preys my hand open.” We have to live with an open hand.
If you do look back, do it sparingly. When you can’t stand it any longer – living in today – then you must draw aside and cry and let it all out. Tell God how you feel. Tell Him you think you got a raw deal. Pour your heart out to Him. He’s a big God. But then follow where He seems to lead you. Follow where friends or a family member want you to go. Follow that inner voice within. God will use people. If a friend gives you a book, read it. Trust the Spirit within you to tell you what to do. What is from God and what is not.
The best gift Dadra gave me is my obedience. Maybe you think you can do your own thing year after year and never respond to the voice of God and make it to Heaven but I don’t have that assurance. I was raised to do the right thing and I can do nothing less than try.
I struggle with some of the things He shows me. Sometimes, I bargain pretty hard, but at least He knows I will try. Knowing whether I see my little girl or not in eternity may weigh in the balance, I must yield to His voice. Nothing will stop me from seeing my daughter again. And so when God puts it on my heart to do something, I may complain and give Him some parameters, but in the end I cooperate. We negotiate.
Many people think this sounds sacrilegious. How can you bargain with God? Many of the people saying this are saying “No!” on a continual basis. They never listen and cooperate. They run their own show, thank you! I think God appreciates the chance for a “Yes.” Some Christians never know the walk of obedience and the joy that comes from it.
Such a loss changes your perspective but it is the perspective we should have had all along. We shouldn’t be complacent – God isn’t. We shouldn’t be careless and wasteful of our time. How many Christians watch soap operas and talk shows, wasting precious time that they could be studying the Bible or sharing with their kids or a friend or a special ministry? There are so many ways He needs our help. The world suffers for lack of the little things we could be doing. God grieves over our carelessness.
Dadra was so very special. So special that He upped the price of seeing her. The price is serving here in the way He shows me. But it is not hard – He does the hard parts Himself. I know that as you walk it out with Him you will see that He is there. I can’t say you will never come to tears – I still do. The depth of that place within only proves how much He provides to give me joy.
Having lost a child of my own, I can anticipate some of your problems. Those nagging thoughts that you have are seldom from God. God doesn’t tell you – you should have done this or that. Also, we need to rid ourselves of any guilt feelings. When my little girl was fatally hit by a car, I had a million “what ifs”. But eventually I had to realize everybody makes mistakes, but not everybody loses a child.
Some people experience the same type of thing and tell how lucky they were their child escaped. I don’t believe they were better than me. We do our best, and our best will never be enough. I knew there was a choice made and that God had chosen, for whatever reason, not to spare me this loss. But I didn’t really believe it was a punishment. I did have to come to the point of forgiving God and myself.
Check your heart and if you’re mad at Him face that and talk with Him about it. Satan is the one that destroys this Earth and he got his authority from us. God created a beautiful world and the next world will be more beautiful. But often in our confusion and hurt, it just seems like He should have helped us. He will help us. He is not the cause of this. This is not Heaven and we want it to be so badly. We want all our loved ones around us happy and healthy and that isn’t the reality of this world. The Bible says there’s enough evil in today.
It was hard for me to go to church. Sitting there in the pews before I had a relationship with Him, all the painful questions would come. “Why? Why Dadra? Didn’t you think it was a beautiful family?” But no answers came. “Maybe there isn’t a God. Maybe I’m just sitting down here talking to the ceiling. Maybe we are just a soap opera He watches each day.” I couldn’t believe if a God created us that He wouldn’t relate to us. If I had faith in anything it was that He would protect my family and act in my behalf. Now I didn’t even have that. So many thoughts, so few answers. And so for the first time in my life, I stopped going to church.
I did not understand why Jesus came and the need to receive Him and His death on the Cross personally for our sins. I thought I had all the answers before this happened. I didn’t realize how few answers I had until I faced this loss alone. My family was far away and we had just moved to a new city where I had no friends. I couldn’t talk with Lamar about it. We were estranged and he was devastated into silence.
This loss will change you. It will mature you and your family. You cannot go back to the person you were. But it is a depth you won’t regret having. When you see other families, you will see they are superficial where yours is not. This is the special gift your loved one will give your family, if you let them. If you don’t fight it. If you seek God. But if you fight it and become hard, then they will have lived and died not only for nothing but even worse than that. Their life will be a negative in your life, What a terrible thing to say about anyone’s life.
The Bible says those who sew in tears will reap in joy. Sometimes, when I get to praying, and worshipping God, laughter will come to me and I will have a joy come upon me that is so great that I laugh until the tears come. I believe if you will claim this for your mourning you too will have a God-given joy. The Bible speaks of joy unspeakable. That’s for you! I know it will happen if you will seek Him day by day through prayer, Bible reading, and good Christian fellowship. God will bring people into your life to help you. I know He will. I believe the recent laughter explosion that has been experienced in certain areas and churches is of God. The devil will try to pervert it but I know it is real in my life.
So often we look at our life and it’s so devastating we wonder how can it all be mended? After we pray and ask Him to forgive us and thank Jesus for his blood that cleanses us, we have a fresh start! If you will watch carefully, you can became a miracle watcher. That prayer will begin a parade of little and big miracles. (Don’t miss the little ones!) And somehow He will begin to change you and help you and give you answers and love you as never before. You will know deep inside that God is in your life. And nothing else will matter as much anymore.
God does love you. He wants to help you right where you are. He won’t take you out, but He will bring you through. Praise God for the good things in your life! I lost a little girl but have more left than most people ever had. I don’t know what God has planned. I just know that He loves you and He is well able to bless and keep you. I want you to know you’re not alone. Whatever happens God will help you, if you will let Him. But remember – He uses people. Don’t turn people away. Let them minister to you. Watch God work in your life.
I would like to close with a prayer:
Dear Heavenly Father,
I ask You to be with this dear sister (or brother) in Christ in her time of need. Go into her broken heart and touch it and heal it. Touch her memory and erase any painful memories and minister to her past and help her to deal with it. Help her, dear Lord, to forgive herself and to understand that Jesus suffered and died for her that she might be free of her past. That Your memory is perfect and You forget and she can too. I ask You, Father, to send Christians to help her and talk with her at this time. I loose friends to her; loving Christian friends. I ask You God to help her forgive any loved one she may blame for anything that has happened. Help her to give that to You, and pray for the person and their hurts and needs and as she does this, I ask for a healing of that relationship.
I come against the spirits of fear and doubt in her life. I loose faith. I bind pride and rebellion and strife; and loose humility and obedience and love. Pour out Your Holy Spirit upon her to give her the strength and power to deal with this time. Make Yourself real to her in a special and supernatural way. I loose the spirit of joy in her life that her family will know that You are the real and the living God. That her life, her face, will be a testimony to the resurrection power of God.
God, I believe You have given me this burden and asked me to write this letter that these words may be spoken and this victory be claimed in her life. I ask that You make her a lighthouse in her family and make her a blessing to all who come in contact with her. Help her to meet the needs of her family at this time. Give her the desire to cook and clean and care for them in a new way. Make homemaking a new joy in her life. Make hers a home of love.
I ask this in the precious name of Jesus.
Please read “Why Malina” too. It’s really quite a special story.