Wednesday, January 8, 2014

"Winters of Your Grief"

I originally had this post ready for Monday, but thought it was too somber to greet everyone after the holidays, so I pulled it. Right after I pulled it, a friend texted me of her new cancer diagnosis. Then another family friend called to tell of his father's cancer, and Jaime posted a request asking for prayer while she was at the funeral of a young mother. This morning another friend's father is not expected to live through the day.

And so....for those of you who are in a season of grief...you are on my heart. And for those of you who are plain feeling the dread of winter, this is for you too.

I don't mind a big snow storm. It heralds the excuse to hibernate by the fire and not go out all day. It breaks routine and gives you something pretty to look at. It covers up the dead dross of last summer's weeds and dried flowers.

Winter is necessary. The ground must rest. The land must sleep.

I get that. But what I dread is when the snow is no longer pretty, yet refuses to go away. When it drags on long after it's needed. When everything is gray and dreary, and you begin to wonder if you ever walked in the sun, watched the butterflies on your flowers, or listened to the cicadas after dark. You begin to feel that the sun on your skin was only in your imagination.

Sometimes seasons are short, and they move on at just the right time. Other times they stubbornly hang on, and are unseasonably bad.

Several of my friends have lost parents in the last year. Four come to mind immediately, and two others whose fathers are fighting cancer. Another lost a brother, another a dear friend. Goodness. Isn't that enough? Stop the blizzard, I say! Yet you might think to yourself that I haven't listed your particular grief.

This week's blizzard that delivered a huge amount of snow in my region reminded me of grief, of my friends, and a favorite poem by Kahlil Gibran.



On Pain
 Kahlil Gibran
Your pain is the breaking of the shell that encloses your understanding.
Even as the stone of the fruit must break, that its heart may stand in the sun, so must you know pain.
And could you keep your heart in wonder at the daily miracles of your life, your pain would not seem less wondrous than your joy;
And you would accept the seasons of your heart, even as you have always accepted the seasons that pass over your fields.
And you would watch with serenity through the winters of your grief.


Much of your pain is self-chosen.
It is the bitter potion by which the physician within you heals your sick self.
Therefore trust the physician, and drink his remedy in silence and tranquillity:
For his hand, though heavy and hard, is guided by the tender hand of the Unseen,
And the cup he brings, though it burn your lips, has been fashioned of the clay which the Potter has moistened with His own sacred tears.



My favorite lines: 
And could you keep your heart in wonder at the daily miracles of your life, your pain would not seem less wondrous than your joy;

And:
And you would accept the seasons of your heart, even as you have always accepted the seasons that pass over your fields.
And you would watch with serenity through the winters of your grief.

So, what are the daily miracles of your life that bring you joy?

John 12:24 states: 24 I assure you, most solemnly I tell you, Unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains [just one grain; it never becomes more but lives] by itself alone. But if it dies, it produces many others and yields a rich harvest.

Lord, cover me with your wintry snows, rest my land, and whatever in me that must die, may it become to you a rich harvest. And may I have eyes to see the daily miracles of life that would outweigh grief with joy.

May you know the tender care of the Unseen, and feel His sacred tears for your sorrow upon your heart.
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Blog post by Anne Love-
Writer of Historical Romance inspired by her family roots. 
Nurse Practitioner by day. 
Wife, mother, writer by night. 
Coffee drinker--any time.
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4 comments:

  1. So beautiful. So poignant. And timely. :)

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  2. Beautiful post, Anne! Though hard to see - at the time - it is those trials, and griefs, that strengthen us, allow us to grow, teach us that everything - and everyone - has an appointed number of seasons. We need never fear, when we put out trust in God, as He is there - in ALL situations - working everything to our good.

    Prayers for you, your friends, and ALL that are grieving!

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    Replies
    1. You are so right Bonnie. Thank you for the prayers!

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