The Other Side of the Sob

Today we welcome our sister and former team writer Ami Wickiser to our blog. At the end of Ami’s post is a link for more information if you would like to guest blog for us.


​I watched her greet person after person, carried along by evident grace. She wanted it to be a celebration instead of a funeral. And indeed, the atmosphere buzzed with the hum of conversation while folks enjoyed dinner and dessert. Pictures of a life well-lived filled the space.

From across the room her eye caught mine. And in the span of a heart beat, she was in my arms collapsing under the weight of her sobs. Without words, we stood that way for a long time. I held her tightly and cried with her.

“I know I can let it all out with you.”

Yes, dear one. It’s ok to weep and grieve even amid a celebration of life.

Three years earlier, the same lady was at the hospital when my life shattered, and I collapsed into her arms. We had been alone in the emergency room, Jon and I. But he went into cardiac arrest, and I needed someone to come. Looking down at my phone, there was her contact information. Mechanically, I touched the screen, not completely aware of who I was calling.

She was there when I finally gave a doctor permission to stop trying to save my husband’s life.It was in her arms that I silently prayed, “Yes Lord, He’s yours. I give him back to you.”

Two lives intertwined through the deepest of moments.

But now I was on the other side of the sob.

I can’t say I was fully prepared to dive down deep with her, or that her weeping didn’t recreate a dozen vivid images in my mind.And I can’t say I expected she would let her composure crack and the waves overtake her. But I’m glad she did. For there was grace for her to greet person after person.

And there was grace to weep.

I’m thankful she felt totally safe. And I’m thankful I could share the weeping with her.

On the other side of the sob I realize a few things:

  • I know suffering, that I may be able to suffer with others.
  • I know redemption in the midst and on the other side of the storm.
  • I have been deeply comforted.
  • Praise God for beauty out of ashes.
  • His plans and purposes are immensely beautiful.

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so the we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. For as we share abundantly in Christ’s sufferings, so through Christ we share abundantly in comfort too.

2 Corinthians 1:3-5 ESV

 

Comfort. It is the result of resting in God’s sovereignty and loving rule over my life.

Peace. I’m not free from troubles, but I possess a profound sense of well being because God is in control. The one who collapsed, could uphold another. I could look her in the eye and say:

It’s ok to weep. It’s ok to ask questions.

Cling to Christ. He carries.

“You won’t believe me now, but one day it will be better. It may be a long time, but one day you’ll want to live again.”

Jesus turns suffering into unspeakable joy.


If you are interested in guest blogging for us, please click the link here and get all the information.

My New Life Calls

Please welcome our guest Erica Kosal today!

Erica Kosal, PhD is an author, biology professor and mom to two young children. Erica lost her husband in June of 2014 after six years of fighting neurological chronic Lyme disease with overlapping ALS symptoms.  Erica has written two books that highlight her relationship with Christ and the power of the inner human spirit.  By writing, Erica has found comfort.  By spending time in nature, Erica has found strength.  And by spending time with her children, Erica has found love.  

 

 


 

But Lot’s wife looked back

as she was following behind him,

and she turned into a pillar of salt.  

Genesis 19:26 NLT

 

I’m living, but my past is dead.  My spouse Jim died two and a half years ago and, of course, nothing is the same.  I look back and remember him, aching for his presence, but at the same time, I know I need to look forward and to the future, moving in the right direction for my children.  

This is a tricky combination.  I know I cannot sit in the past and become stuck in the sadness of Jim’s no longer being here, but I also want to honor him, keep him in our conversations, and include Jim in our lives as much as possible.  

As I reflect on this dichotomy my mind returns over and over to Lot’s wife.  Living in Sodom, Lot and his family lived among some very bad people and finally God had enough.  Angels warned Lot to take his wife and two daughters and flee the land without looking back as Sodom and Gomorrah were to be destroyed.  As the family ran, only Lot’s wife looked back, and she turned into a pillar of salt.  

Obeying God is important as the story told in Genesis reminds us, but I also think that this is an illustration of what can happen if we concentrate too much on the past.  What consequences might come our way if we do not trust God to take us out of harm’s way and give us a future.  If we try to return to our past, when we know we cannot, we can destroy ourselves.  Longing for the past, looking behind, rather than trusting to move forward, can cause us to become frozen and paralyzed.  Sometimes when I feel like I cannot move forward because it is too overwhelming, I draw to this story.  I have to move forward and obey God who is telling me to raise my kids to know Him, to trust Him that my future will be safe, and that a home will be present.  God placed me and my two children in this position, and I have to trust that someday it will be clear why the events of my life unfolded as they did.  In the meantime, I run to the hills with my family in tow and know that if I look back without trust of moving forward, I too can be consumed with grief without finding value in my current life.  I do need to remember Jim and honor him, but I cannot stay stuck in my old life.  My new life calls.

God, I pray that all women who are feeling stuck and find themselves returning to memories of their old life without being able to move forward can be shown Your love in a way around them that reminds them to trust You and to move forward in faith.  I pray that we can honor our late husbands and always cherish the memories we have without becoming consumed by wanting our old lives too much.  Help us move forward and see our futures as ones with meaning and hope.  In Jesus’ name I pray.  Amen.  

 


Do you want to submit a guest blog for consideration? Get all the particulars by clicking here on this link.

My Plans

Today we welcome our guest Evelyn Willis.

 

 

“For I know the plans I have for you declares the Lord,

plans to prosper you and not to harm you,

plans to give you hope and a future.”

Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV)

 

I’m a planner –a list-maker.   That is one of the things that attracted me to Rick. He was a planner. He was able to clearly articulate his goals for the upcoming year, fives years, and even ten years out.  We had plans. So when Rick died suddenly at fifty-eight years of age, I was lost.  I didn’t know what to do.  It was not supposed to happen like this.  This wasn’t part of my plan.

Rick and I met through a mutual friend in December of 1982. We began dating in January of 1983, he proposed in March, and we married five months later.  It was a whirlwind!  I knew he was “the one” because I had a list of things I was prayerfully looking for in a husband and Rick quickly checked off most the things I was looking for.  So we began to plan our lives together.  We planned where we would live so that our children could go to the best schools possible.  We planned family vacations.  We planned quarterly get-a-ways to keep our marriage fresh.  We planned for college for our children.  We made plans financially so that we would be set in our retirement.

We had plans!

We planned to travel.  We had planned to grow old together.

What I hadn’t planned on was being a widow at fifty-two.  I hadn’t planned on kissing my husband as I left for work only to get a call before lunch that he had collapsed, never to regain consciousness.  I hadn’t planned on burying my husband five months after our thirtieth anniversary.  I hadn’t planned on being a single mother.

This is not what I’d planned, Lord!

I was lost!  I cried out to God in my anguish.  What was I supposed to do without Rick– my love, my best friend, my covering?  What now, Lord?  We had plans!  Then the Ultimate Planner, the One who knows the number of my days, who knew me in my mother’s womb, spoke to me so clearly.  He reminded me that His plans for me did not die when Rick died.  He still had a plan and a purpose for my life.  That word spoken quietly to my heart did not solve all my problems or alleviate all my pains and questions, but it did give me a reason to hope.  Enough hope to keep moving forward.

For now, that will have to be enough… And it is.

I can begin to plan again.

Father, thank You for the plans You have for our lives.  Help us to trust You as those plans unfold for our good.  In Your name,  Amen.


Evelyn Willis lost her husband Rick suddenly on January 8, 2014.  They had just celebrated their 30th anniversary.  They have 3 sons, a daughter, and 2 grandsons. Evelyn is an elementary school teacher who loves reading, singing, and walking her  two Shih Tzu doggies.

Would you like to submit a guest blog? Follow the link to our website page with all the information you need.

For more information about our ministry, please visit us at: www.awidowsmight.org

Rock Collecting

Today, please join us in welcoming our guest writer, Marilyn Nutter.


While visiting family out west for the Christmas holidays, Marilyn found retirement dreams with her husband interrupted when he suffered a fatal heart attack on December 23, 2011. In her new journey, she has found God’s mercies and faithfulness real each day (Lamentations 3: 22-23). She is the mother of three adult daughters, grandmother to eight and lives in Greer, SC. The author of three devotional books and a contributor to compilations and on line sites, Marilyn also serves in women’s ministry in her church, facilitates a Grief Support group and posts encouragement on her personal blog.

He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end.

Ecclesiastes 3:11 NIV

Whenever it rained, my neighbors experienced run off in their yard. A retaining wall wasn’t needed, but a landscaper suggested piling rocks in the area to keep excess water from flowing into their yard and soaking the grass. So after our usual morning walk, Lanette and I drove around our neighborhood to look for rocks.

We scouted a couple of vacant lots in our new housing development and found rocks in different sizes, shapes and colors. We had enough to fill the trunk of her car. They looked like just a pile, but once her husband placed them in the backyard, they became an attractive and functional arrangement.

My grief and loss journey has been, and I am sure will continue to feel, like “rocks” at times. There are the hard moments, moments where waves of sadness come-when my husband’s absence is profound, such as at the births of two grandsons.  Sometimes there are short, “smaller” moments, triggered by an aroma or even passing a product on a supermarket shelf, that bring memories.  My eyes fill with tears, I have a lump in my throat, or a momentary knot in my stomach. There’s awareness of loss when I tackle a project that is out of my skill set or I see couples holding hands. Other waves may be longer—a cloud I can’t shake on a lonely weekend. There are big moments—holidays and special occasions, where loss is so large that everything else is obscured.

But…there are days when I go to lunch with a friend, spend time with my prayer group, go to the beach for a girlfriends’ getaway, am inspired to write, redecorate a room, play with my grandchildren and yes, laugh.

Like those rocks in my neighbor’s yard, some moments are large, sharp with jagged edges that hurt. Others are smoother and colorful. I have joy and sense healing. The different moments are all necessary and “functional” to move forward in the winding labyrinth of grief and mourning.

Grief experts remind us not to be stuck in our grief, that grief is a journey, not a destination.  I guess being stuck is much like leaving my grief “rocks” in the vacant lot or in the trunk of a car. Instead, the beautiful arrangement in the right place made a difference and created a picture for me. When I realized the rocks had functional and aesthetic value, I reminded myself that God has purpose in my loss and grief path. God is accompanying me on my journey; the large, sharp and hard moments combine with the smaller smooth ones. Splashes of color accentuate the arrangement.

As I progress, the larger rocks become less sharp and less prominent. They move to the background. It is part of the grieving and mourning process. It’s part of developing my story to make something beautiful in my life, especially to see that God is trustworthy. In moving forward and healing, I find grace in each rock and my developing story gives grace to others.

Dear Heavenly Father, sometimes we can only see the jagged “rocks” in our lives, piled up with no purpose.  Help us to see all the events, good and bad, happy and sad, as part of our stories in making our lives beautiful for Your glory.  Amen


To learn more about our ministry please visit us at: A Widow’s Might

Would you like to guest blog for us? Guest blogging for AWM

 

 

 

God of All Comfort

We are excited to welcome today our friend Rebecca Ramsey! Rebecca came to our conference in 2016. Join us in welcoming her!


Blessed be the God and Father of mercies and God of all comfort. Who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. For as we share abundantly in Christ’s sufferings, so through Christ we share abundantly in comfort too. 2 Corinthians 1:3-5 ESV
 Have you ever met someone seemingly at a random moment in time, not thinking that anything would ever come of it, only to have God bring that meeting full circle a year or more later?
I met a lady in the grocery store over a year ago; she saw me using coupons and asked me a question about them. I remember telling her I would add her to the coupon group I was a part of on our social media page.
Somehow the fact that my Dave had passed away the week prior had come out in conversation. She literally gasped and asked me how I was even standing, much less shopping. I simply said, “My kids still have to eat.”
We became “friends” on social media but I never heard from her personally again until last month…a year after our “chance” meeting.
She posted about her losing her husband and my heart just broke for her instantly. I commented (still not remembering who she was) by explaining that I totally understood how she was feeling, and to message me privately if she needed an ear to listen or a shoulder to cry on.
When she messaged me, she told me part of her story and asked how I’ve done it…I told her, “One day at a time, one step at a time, even one breath and prayer at a time.”
I have messaged her every few days since then to check on her– I don’t want her to feel invisible like I have so many times in the last year. Over the last few weeks I’ve tried to figure out where I knew her from and how we became “friends” on social media but I just couldn’t figure it out. Until last week when she messaged me, telling me how I had touched her heart IN THE GROCERY STORE  last year! WOW!! It all came back to me, and then I saw how God’s plan through meeting that day had come full circle!
God has held me, walked with me, and comforted me in so many ways through my grief journey. He brought me to this point so HE would be able to use me to speak to my friend’s heart through her own grief journey. Am I still broken? Yes…Do I still miss Dave so much it hurts sometimes? Yes…Do I have it all figured out? No…BUT GOD DOES and HE can still use me as a cracked vessel and, oh! the flowers that will grow because of Him using our cracks to water the seeds that had been planted before we got there…because He knows and prepared the way ahead of time!
Father God, You give us comfort through Yourself but also through other people we come in contact with. Sometimes we receive comfort from others and sometimes we are able to give comfort to others. Show us divine appointments today in what might seem like coincidences. And give us boldness to proclaim Your strength through us. Amen

 

Rebecr Ramseyca Ramsey is a 36 year old mother of 3 children; 2 sons and 1 daughter. The two oldest of those children she recently adopted. Dave, her husband of nearly 10 years, passed away 13 months ago after just a few months battle with cancer.  In the last year and a half, her strength and faith has been tried but God has brought her through and continues to bless her and her children just as He promised He would. She feels led and hopes to work more closely with other widows and those grieving a loss in the near future.

 

Partnering With Us

Yesterday, we talked about the fact that we all have stories of His love and faithfulness. We believe we need to tell those stories so others can run with endurance. We need to be like the marathon runners, and come back to run with those behind us and cheer them on so they can run the race with endurance.

We believe that God’s word is clear… ministering to widows is an important and worthy calling.

We are looking for those who feel called to partner with us.

If you are called to turn back and help others.

If you feel God prompting you to share your story through writing.

If you have a ministry or book you think would benefit our audience.

If God is prompting you to support us financially.

Then, we want to hear from you!

Please follow this link to find out more: Partner With Us

We look forward to hearing from you and seeing how God can use you to bless others!

We look forward to partnering together for HIS GLORY!

The Last

Join our friend and sister, Cynthia Aldrich, today as she shares her journey with us.

The Last

Everyone talks about how hard the big firsts are: Christmas, Easter, Birthday, anniversaries.  The first time you ______ (fill in the blank with the event or daily task.)  These also are hard, but in a more private way.

What I wasn’t expecting was how hard the last would be.  Most of the lasts happened in the first year of my widowhood, but I kept the clothing he wore.  Not the “work clothes”, suits, ties and dress shirts that he hated to wear — but the “fun” clothing he wore around the house. I packed them in plastic, keeping his scent on them.  They were safe from time. They would always be safe.

My life had changed, it had become impossible to keep the house we shared. Time to move, in his closet they sat, both a reminder of the good times and what I was missing. It had become obvious that it was time to rip the Band-Aid off and donate them to a shelter.  It meant unpacking them from their safe hermetically sealed plastic, washing, folding and giving them away.  They weren’t the last pieces of his life, but they represented the mundane, the daily tasks of caring for him.  The daily task of showing love to another person. The intimate part of life together really was over.  This was why I held on to them, –I didn’t want that part of my life to be done.

I packed everything up and went to a laundromat.  “Quicker to do the loads all at one time and in public, I won’t break down.,” I thought.  I brought with Wayne Gruden’s Systemic Theology, what better antidote to crying, use your mind.  Also, since it weighs five pounds, I can drop it on my foot, then have a reason to be crying. It was quiet, no one else there when I started. Washers loaded, time to wait.

I didn’t open Gruden, but found myself searching the recesses of my mind for all the verses on God’s faithfulness and enduring love.  Here in the quiet, I see His steadfast love that endures forever. (Ps 118), it never ends, His mercies are new each morning, great is His faithfulness (Lam 3:22-23).  God is faithful, keeping covenant and steadfast love (Duet 7:9).  God is faithful and loving to me, a covenant breaker.  For His steadfast love endures forever, is repeated in Psalm 136 twenty-six times.  Twenty-six times God promises to love me forever!!!

Folding his clothing for the last time, the tears came, little ones, not a down pour, but the kind that drip out.  I had a lighter heart. A bit of joy creeped in. I knew His steadfast love endures forever. I’m on a journey, that I’ve described as grief, but it’s a journey to God, who’s steadfast love endures forever.

Thank you,  Father,  You are the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last.  You hold our lasts in Your hands. Your love is steadfast, enduring forever, never ending.  With You there will be no last, only joy in Your eternal love.


Cynthia Aldrich was one of the original AWM Ruth Retreat members, She lost her husband of 8,677 days in May of 2012.  She lives north of the Twin City Metro area of Minnesota and is still waiting for summer–it should arrive about the same time as the new Viking stadium opens!  While waiting for the Viking season to begin, she stays warm by attempting to bake the perfect chocolate cake.

 

For more about our ministry and our journeys through widowhood, please visit us at www.awidowsmight.org

The Morning the Sun Went Down

Today we have a special treat. Our friend Meta Mason joins us in sharing some of her journey with us.

This morning the sun went down. Or at least I thought it did.  I was driving my son to school and the sun was making its appearance.  The glow over the mountains surrounding our town was beautiful.  Then I saw it.  The first bright sliver of sun.  Not the whole orange ball, but a good chunk of it–brilliant against the dark gray and purple of the Catalina Mountains here in southern Arizona.  I was humming a praise song and feeling a brief glimpse of joy and peace.  Then the road turned.  All of a sudden the sliver of sun disappeared. The craggy top of the mountain covered it right up.  The road was again filled with the shadows of dawn.  The mountain looked even darker.

I pulled the car over and just stared.  How could the sun go down when I had just seen it come up?  Oh, God.  Tsun rising over Catalina Mtnshis is so like You to remind me of Who You are.  I need concrete examples. The sun didn’t go down.  From my vantage point on this particular path, it only appeared to go down.  What do I know to be true?  The sun is still coming up.  The Pusch Ridge peak is hiding it a little longer.  If I keep driving or wait a few more minutes, I will again see it in all of its brilliance.

The parallel is perfect.  It has now been nineteen months since Karl was killed in a car accident while driving to church.  Our daughter was critically injured.  She has had eight surgeries and has no vision or hearing on her left side.  Our “road” has been dark.  Shadows immediately obscured everything.  I desperately searched online for help and found A Widow’s Might website.  That very day I signed up for the widow’s retreat in North Carolina, not having any idea what to expect.  I ordered the devotional.   Our church family here and my new friends from the retreat who live all over the country have shown me that I wasn’t alone in the dark.  We are all at different points on the dark path.  They gave me hope.  Eventually… I never thought it would happen…eventually I felt like I could breathe again. Skylar graduated with honors and went to college.  Hannah and Kody are back in routines.  I started playing electric bass in church and am raising chickens.  The sun is starting to come up. I can see the glow peeking out behind the mountain.

And like the road I was on this morning, there are moments when I feel the shadows return.  It feels like I’m going backwards.  The wave of grief and the fear of moving forward overwhelms. It’s dark again.  In these moments, the Son hasn’t gone away.  My vision is just blocked.

Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope.  The steadfast love of The Lord never ceases. His mercies never come to an end. They are new every morning. Great is His faithfulness. 

Lamentations 3:21-22 NIV

After all the crud and the shadows of night is the YET that brings hope.  The sun will rise.  The mountains only hide it for a little while.  As I write this now sitting in Safeway’s parking lot, the sun is blinding my eyes.  Thank you Jesus for the reminder.  The Son always shows up.

Lord God- You know this journey we’re on is dark and scary.  Help us to KNOW that You are still there.  Help us know that the shadows will disappear.  Amen

 

 


Meta lives in Tucson, Arizona with her three children, Skylar, Hannah, anfamd Kody.  She was married to Karl for 20 years minus 17 days.  In July of 2014, Karl was killed instantly when a distracted driver ran a red light as he and their daughter were driving to serve in youth ministry.  Meta resigned from teaching to care for her daughter who was seriously injured in the accident.  By God’s grace, her daughter is doing well and has started college.  Meta is spending more time with her two children at home, partnering in a new business venture, raising chickens, and playing the electric bass in the worship band.  God gave her three words prior to Karl’s accident:  perspective, gratitude, and trust.  She is learning how to daily live out these words in His grace.

Unanswered Questions

Please join us as we welcome our lovely friend, Janene Gaynor, today.

From the end of the earth I call to You when my heart is faint; Lead me to the rock that is higher than I. 

Psalm 61:2 NASB

My husband of forty years received hundreds of prayers for healing from bladder cancer.  As, “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever,” (Heb. 13:8 NASB), we looked to God for complete healing. Therefore, with my husband’s great vitality and passion to live, prayer continued over the course of his illness. We knew at the midpoint that we were really asking for a miracle. Medical treatment here could only do so much. Despite chemo and surgeries, he was considered “terminal”. The cancer was marching on.

I prayed for God alone to determine my husband’s future. God’s answer for healing proved to be, “Not here.” My beloved did not receive healing of his body here but received an imperishable body forever.  I have pondered the question, “Why did God not heal my husband here?”, and although I don’t have an answer, I did develop a strong conviction over the time he was ill.

I observed Christ drawing believers together in prayer for my husband and in service to our entire family. I witnessed how my husband’s life and the Spirit in which he endured the cancer, spoke to them. The body of Christ was evident and it was truly beautiful and a blessing to watch. From this I understood:

  1. God always has a big picture viewpoint and works beyond the one receiving prayer.
  2. God’s first priority is always eternal, not temporal.
  3. God’s character is revealed at Christ’s cross. When struggling with a question about what God did or didn’t do, revisiting Christ’s cross will refresh our vision of God’s character.  That knowledge is an anchor for our hearts regardless of circumstance.

Christ had us yesterday.

He has us today.

He will have us tomorrow.

God is faithful.

When my husband died, every relationship changed—even my relationship with myself. However, our God never changes. That is why He is my Rock.  No other security exists on this earth. He is the Alpha and the Omega and my ever-present refuge.  If we know our God’s character, our unanswered questions can wait. The knowledge of the Holy One is our daily anchor whatever may come.

Heavenly Father, we thank You for Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith and the One who lived and died so we could know You always!  We do have questions and surely don’t understand the mysteries that occupy Your Lordship over the earth. However, we know You are good, loving, faithful, worthy of trust, and abounding in loving-kindness and grace toward us! Thank You for not burdening us as individuals with all you see, which likely would explain so much. You are God and we are not and this is where we lay aside the will to know answers and focus on the privilege of knowing YOU! Love to You now and forever, Jesus, because You loved us first. In Jesus Name.


 

Janene @ Myrtle Beach

Janene lives in the Dallas area, surrounded by her three children, their sweethearts, two grandchildren, and a host of wonderful friends.  Janene married her beloved Frank in 1972 and enjoyed 40 precious years with him. Four months after celebrating their 40th wedding anniversary, Frank lost his rigorous battle against bladder cancer. Frank left a void so vast, it was like a black hole which threatened to swallow Janene whole. However, God’s faithfulness has been exceptional. As a retired minister at a local church, she spends her time painting, mentoring, serving in Stephen Ministry leadership, and seeks to trust Christ in this new season of life.

 

Star Light, Star Bright

Sisters, welcome to 2016. We are thankful for each of you and excitedly anticipating all God has in store for us this year. Please pray for us as we seek to be obedient to God’s leadings and as we proclaim, each day in this ministry, His great glory in the midst of our great losses.

 

Join us today as our dear sister, Angela Key, shares what God has laid on her heart.

 

“He determines the number of the stars and calls them each by name.”

Psalm 147:4 NIV

Stars! I love them. I marvel at their splendor, even following the phases of the moon–I never want to miss a full one. How awesome is our God to give us beautiful glitter in the sky!

The last couple of weeks the morning sky has been incredible.  We have had clear skies, and the stars have been bright.   There is one eastern star that is very bright.  Every morning I look forward to seeing it on the eastern horizon.  The other morning I decided I was going to name this particular star Kirk.  I thought the star was very fitting for my late husband since Kirk lit up our lives and the lives of so many others.  Our daughter Emily loved the idea, agreeing it is worthy of Kirk’s name.

But before WE named this star, God has already counted and named ALL the stars in the heavens.  God made the heavens and the earth, and in doing so, He shared His creation with us.  He also shared His most precious gift with us, His one and only Son, Jesus Christ.  When Jesus was born, a star directed shepherds and wise men to His place of birth in Bethlehem.  Matthew 2:10-11 NIV tells us, “When they saw the star, they were overjoyed. On coming to the house, they saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshipped Him.  Then they opened their treasures and presented Him with gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh.”  

Can you imagine the stories that stars can tell?  They have been around since the beginning of time.  They directed humble men to witness the birth of our Savior.  

Sometimes, I sit and wonder what Kirk is doing in Heaven, wondering if he can see the stars from there. But I take comfort in knowing that Kirk is there waiting for us.  I  believe this because I got to witness the moment he accepted Jesus as his personal Savior. I was blessed to witness the most important decision that Kirk ever made.  The day we were married, we both were children of God!

I am honored to say we enjoyed eighteen years of marriage.  One thing I have learned in this journey is God is in control– I am not.  I have to surrender my will to God and let Him take control of the direction of my life.  I have to trust that He knows what’s best for me and let Him lead me.  I have to trust that He will heal not only me, but my daughter Emily.  Psalm 147:3-5 NIV says, “He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.  He determines the number of the stars and calls them each by name.  Great is our Lord and mighty in power; his understanding has no limit.”  

Even though God has numbered and named each beautiful star in the sky, one of them has the honor of being named Kirk in our house.  The grief does slowly ease, but we miss him each day.  The pain lessens and life resumes, but the hole in my heart will never disappear.  I will look up at that star each morning and I will smile, choosing to smile and cherish all of our memories than to be sad and dwell on the loss. I know right now he is  smiling and rejoicing in heaven singing, “Holy, Holy, Holy!”  

Lord, thank You for giving us the stars to look upon and marvel at their beauty. For those suffering from grief, I pray they find enjoyment in just looking up and seeing Your incredible creation. I pray that healing can begin for ones that are calling out for Your help.  You promise to hear our cries and will heal our brokenness. In His Precious Name I pray, Amen

Dec 1 103 (1)

Angela  has been widowed for four and a half years.  Her husband, Kirk, died suddenly in a workplace accident as a heavy equipment/tractor trailer mechanic.  He was a great husband and an incredible father to their beautiful daughter, Emily.  After his loss, she decided to fully lean into the comfort and healing power of Jesus.  Angela began to write in a journal about their loss., and even started her own blog.  Apart from writing, she loves to read and take care of  two awesome dogs, Makayla and Noodle, and watch her talented  daughter play soccer.  Angela and Emily enjoy spending time together with family and friends at her games.  Angela also works full time as a Certified Professional Coder for five wonderful OB/Gyn doctors, and works with new believers at her church. 

 

 

Want to read more about God’s creation in the stars? Every Star by Julie

Looking for more about heaven? It’s Heaven Because Jesus is There by Ami

A Mere Splinter of Eternity by Bonnie or Will We Be Married in Heaven by Kit