A few months after my daughter passed away I made the decision, at my family’s guidance, to return to my hometown of Indianapolis. My family saw that continuing to live in my house, our house the house my daughter and I shared for 2 years’ post-divorce was silently killing me. It was a difficult decision to leave a job I loved and people that helped me through one of the toughest experiences in my life. Home seemed like a logical place for me to be – with family.
Searching for a new church home became my priority. I understood the importance of having my faith but even more important was having a church family. It did not take me long to find Grace Church in Noblesville, just outside of Carmel. I got involved quickly with their Grieving Support team and became a Touchstone who was a parent who had lost a child and knew the importance of having someone to come alongside a newly bereaved parent to support them when they were ready.
Grace also provided me an opportunity to work with college students which enriched my life beyond measure. It provided me an outlet for my heart to love on these students while they were away from their families at college. It did more good for me than I think it did for them. I’m still in contact with a few of them and still cherish those memories.
Grace decided one year that they would stage a re-enactment of Jesus’ last days and death prior to Easter. I wasn’t sure what to expect but felt compelled to go and experience it. There were many areas that included the Last Supper and washing of feet. One area brought me to my knees. There laid just a cross across the stage and areas to pray throughout the room. I walked up to that cross and reached out to touch it and it seemed as if there was some type of energy around it that provided this message to me. I began to weep and grieve for not only the loss of Jesus but of God’s son as I understood the loss of a child too. From that day forward I looked at Good Friday from a much different perspective.
Through my years as a Christian I celebrated Christ’s birth like many, some who don’t even know the true meaning of Christmas. I grew in my faith as an adult and as a parent. Through the death of my mother and grandmother and the eventual death of my daughter – my faith was also challenged, often rocked to its core. Here is what I know – my faith, the resurrection of Jesus and eternal life promised is what I hang onto in the dark moments of my grief. My faith has been my rock and salvation after the loss of my only child Brittany. While it took a huge hit, my faith sustained me when nothing else could soothe my broken heart.
This Good Friday and Easter are a perfect reminder to me and I hope for someone who reads this, that the hope of seeing our loved ones again is grounded in this holiday weekend and will sustain us through our dark days.
Wishing you light and love.
Until next time,