August 29, 2013

Peaceful

Peaceful

Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.Philippians 4:6-7 NLT

The tide started rising all too soon, without warning. The sand beneath my feet is quick to disappear, washed away, making me drift out into the deeper water. The tears want to flow, but I am so afraid they won’t stop once they start! Lord, I was hoping for a little more time, a few more days before this started. At least until after the baby shower we are having for my new grand-baby. Help me!

As I am sucked down and pulled out to sea, the waves of grief come crashing down, pushing me deep into the dark, dark water.  For a moment it can seem so peaceful, the waves don’t hit so hard down here. But this is not where I want to stay! I won’t give up! Let me out, let me rise! I kick so hard, I fight to reach the top. It is so exhausting! I come up, gasping for air.

I think, ‘I do not have time for this’, but I have learned grief doesn’t care, it is not concerned with my schedule. It will hit out of nowhere; in any place, at any time.

Day after day, the waves come. Another emotional blow as my niece is in a bad accident on her way here. I thank God she and others are not hurt. Just as I am out of energy; just as I am about to be taken down one last time, Jesus comes to my rescue. He pulls me up and holds on tightly.

I don’t understand all the reasons he allows me to go through these times. I do know I haven’t taken my eyes off Him. I do know He is with me through this journey. There is peace and comfort in that. God told his people in Isaiah 66:12-13 “I will cause peace to flow over her like a river. I will make the wealth of nations sweep over her like a flooding stream. You will nurse and be carried in her arms. You will play on her lap. As a mother comforts her child, I will comfort you. You will find comfort in Jerusalem.” (Emphasis mine)

I thought back to a recent whitewater rafting trip we took with friends. The river was fuller than usual. The rapids were many. Many were thrown out of their rafts into the quickly moving waters. Waves came crashing down on them, sometimes taking them under. I watched as each came up gasping for air. I have to ask myself, do we really find peace in a “full-flowing river”? Certainly when on shore it can look pretty and peaceful. But what about when there are rocks and rapids? What about when we are thrown overboard, under the harsh waves and fighting for our next breath? I believe so. As we journey down the river in the raft of life, sometimes we are bounced to and fro and out of the boat by the rocks and rapids. Sometimes, we are taken under and come up gasping for air. As we cling to our life jacket, Jesus, we are rescued. We have the life jacket tightly around us even when we go under the water. It is what helps bring us to the top again. HE is with us the whole time.

Philippians 4:6-7 tells us “Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus. (Emphasis mine)

As I finish writing this, now days later and on the second anniversary of our son’s death, I still have grief, I still have tears, I still lack understanding. Once again I can say, with a grateful heart, I will survive the rough waters as I cling to my life jacket, Jesus. I have a fresh vision of the PEACE of a full-flowing river that surpasses my understanding.

#FreshVision

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