Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Spring


Grief is as tricky as love. I’m baffled by it, because it seems there is no predicting what it will look like on a case-to-case basis. The funny thing is, now that I’ve experienced it, I feel no more qualified to help someone with hers unless it followed a path similar to my own—and that has rarely been the case!

This is something that caught me off guard because I expected to be able to relate to anyone who has been through the process of grieving, especially if it was grief for a child, but I’ve found that’s not really how it works. I’m not saying there’s not a special bond of understanding, because there is, but what I've noticed is that each experience is so different!! Similar situations by no means dictate similar responses. Now that I take the time to think about it, it makes sense. It’s the same with love. We all have a different experience with it, but that doesn’t mean we can’t relate to each other if our experience with it aren’t identical. It just means that we need to approach it from the perspective that it is different for everyone.

That’s the main thing I’ve been learning. Different is simply different. That was frustrating at first because I have something in me that wants to be able to tell someone “That’s exactly what I went through. I understand!" But that’s not going to be the case most of the time. So I’ve realized I don’t have to try and find common ground; I just have to love and ask God for the right ways to pray.

Is there a right and a wrong? I don’t think so. I think there are many rights and many wrongs. There are a lot of ways to do grieving in a way that is healthy and moves through everything necessary to heal. There are also a lot of ways to grieve in a way that will leave you damaged and broken. My job, no matter the case, is not to judge but to pray.

While I’ve been mulling this over, spring has been sitting on the doorstep. It is so beautiful this year, and Marianna, Nathan and I jumped in full force. We’ve planted flowers, we go to the park or on a walk daily, we’ve been to the zoo on the weekends, we’ve drawn chalk on the sidewalk and blown bubbles in the yard, we’ve played soccer and helped Marianna ride her bike. It’s been perfect. Spring in my life just happened to coincide with spring in Memphis.

I don’t understand grief, but I know from experience that whatever the path it takes, God can bring you out of the winter and into the spring. I read something in Luke 1 that I thought was really beautiful. Zacharias, the father of John the Baptist, is speaking of his son, who will be the one to go before the Lord and prepare the way. He says he will "give to His people the knowledge of salvation by the forgiveness of their sins, because of the tender mercy of our God, with which the Sunrise from on high will visit us, to shine upon those who sit in darkness and the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace."

14 comments:

boltefamily said...

You are so right Angie! It is different for everyone and honestly it is different for me day to day. I never know what a day might bring until it is here. Thank you for sharing. Spring is something I look forward to! Praying for your precious family!

Elizabeth said...

Angie, Thank you for continuing to share all that God is teaching you on this journey of faith. While different from most, it is still a faith journey and that is what connects you with other believers like myself. After reading your post, I was reminded of 2 Cor.1:3-4 and just thought I'd share it with you.

Laurie said...

Beautifully said Angie and so true to the heart. I am so glad you opened the door and found spring waiting for you. It is my favorite season of the year, not too hot, not too cold, new growth springing up all over, new hope. Your faith journey you share here is so refreshing and understandable. I love you guys and am praying for your new baby:) Love the picture of Marianna.

Love and Hugs, Laurie in Ca.

Kendra White said...

Your words from Luke 1 are so comforting. My aunt of age 61 went to have her tonsils taken out last Friday and did really well. Went to sleep that night and never woke up. We buried her yesterday. I was just writing sympathy cards to my 5 cousins who are now without a mom and decided to take a break. Read your blog and knew it was a word from the LORD. Thank you for being obedient to Him!

The Schwant Family said...

saw this and thought of you...
http://www.kookoobearkids.com/prodinfo.asp?number=04088174&top=1485

The Schwant Family said...

oh shoot, te whole link didn't post, here is the rest
04088174&top=1485

Anonymous said...

"...BUT joy comes in the morning!" We also are told that as long as this earth lasts, there will be seasons. I have learned that it is necessary to experience grief alone. That's what makes it so productive to our faith. That is when we know that God is constant and a rock to depend on. Although we have loved ones who hold us up with concern, we sense the truth that only God understands fully the individual griefs our heart experiences. I used to struggle with a sense of obligation to read my Bible daily and pray for others and about the concerns in my own life, but grieving has made me experience God in a way that has grown my love for Him so that I now run to Him, knowing it is a priviledge and a joy. May your "spring" be sweet with the smells of frangrant flowers and fresh cut grass. May the sunshine warm you through and through, and may your joy in the Lord be strengthened!

Kenzie said...

Angie-

Exactly... each situation, even ours that are so similar, are yet so different. Each time I am tempted to say "I know"... I realize that I don't. Thank you for showing us how you are doing, how you are totally engaged in the springtime. :)

Thinking of you and praying for y'all today!

Love,
Kenzie

Dana said...

Poppy Joy is still reaching out touching others. I came upon your blog and have been totally immersed in it for the last few days. I am going through a rough spot in my life and your great love and faith have given me new hope. What a wonderful testimony that you live. I am awed by your faith. When I watched your video I could feel the love in the room and the great faith that you have. Thank you for sharing your story. It is such an inspiration. I will continue to follow your walk with the Lord. Poppy Joy will forever be etched in my heart.

Anonymous said...

Spring has sprung,
The grass has riz...
I'm so glad
To see you is
Ok.

I'm no poet, but I am thrilled to see the Son shining on you, in you, and through you!

I'm praying for your family and for the baby who is going to join it!

Kim (marygracesummons.blogspot.com) said...

Thinking of you Angie. Praying for you and your family.
With love,
Kim

Karen said...

Praying for you daily.

Crystal said...

Wow, you are amazing! Thank you for sharing this for us fellow Christians. I will pray for you and yours. May you dance with Poppy in heaven in God's time. I was so touched by you also because I gave birth on November 30th, 2007Again thanks for sharing all this.

Jaclyn said...

Angie,

I am thinking of you as Mothers Day is tomorrow. I know you will be missing your daughter especially tomorrow. Though i haven't met you, you are a mother who has deeply touched my life. You are in my prayers.

Blessings,
Jaclyn