Max Lucado speaks in the second chapter of God Will Carry You Through about Joseph and his story of survival during a time when all had given up on him. All that Joseph had been through he still chose to believe in something bigger. He was ridiculed, forgotten worst, he was sold out by those who he trusted. So when you think of his story, you would think that he had a lot to be sad about. A lot to be hurt by. Yet he preserved and never gave up. Bitterness and hate never got a foothold on Joseph. He held onto his great faith in God that God will rewrite Joseph’s story for good.
Since the death of my daughter, I have often thought about what I could have possibly done in life to deserve such a tragic circumstance as the death of my daughter. My only child. How could I make sense of the death of my 48 year old mother from Breast Cancer just two months before the birth of her granddaughter, my daughter Brittany. How could I make sense of my grandmother dying five years later? None of it made sense really. I just couldn’t think about the big picture anymore, because if I did, I couldn’t help but think I was a bad person.
As I stood firm in my faith and that God would make things right one day, I began to think less about the big picture and more about “what can I do to bring purpose to this loss. All of the losses. What could I do that God could use to turn the evil in my life to good. What I realized was nothing. There was nothing I could do but believe. So I read the bible, listened to various ministers, such as Joyce Meyer and Andy Stanley so that I could build my faith even stronger than it had been before. God would do the rest.
In the eight, almost nine years since the passing of my daughter, I have found that God is using my story, Brittany’s story to help encourage other parents, especially moms (because I can relate) that while this type of pain is relentless and it purses you diligently. There is hope. That God will carry you through it. I cannot explain it, but understand when I say that my faith is how I made it through the first few days, weeks and months. It was the only thing I could hang on to. Now as my grief has matured, so has my faith. That one day God will restore what has been taken from me.
In the meantime, I understand my purpose. Why I am still here. In fact, while sitting in my office the other day, I stared at my daughter’s picture and asked her “remind me why I’m still here”. Later that day, I got the news that a dear friend’s son had passed earlier that day in the morning. Right then I knew Brittany reminded me that while it’s not easy, it is my purpose for the days I have left on this earth to walk in hope and show hope to others who are on this journey of grief with me.
I can only hope that my words can bring a sigh of relief, a soft place to land and a guiding light that hope and faith are the cornerstones of grace. It is in the grace that I receive daily that I move forward each day with a renewed faith and purpose.
Until next time,
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