The sky was blue—I didn’t care. The summer morning was cool, a slight breeze jiggled the leaves—So what? The sun peeked through the needles of the pine tree just off our patio—I squinted. Shrugged. And sat huddled in the darkness of my soul on the cushion of my chair, sipping a steaming cup of coffee, oblivious and untouched by this one-of-a-kind splendid morning.
Gloom saturated my spirit. A tear slid down my cheek. I released a heavy sigh and closed my eyes and whispered, “Lord, if You’re here, I need to feel Your presence, and know You haven’t deserted me.”
It had been well over a year since our daughter’s death. No warning. No time for goodbyes. No I love you. Just gone—
And fear consumed me.
Emotionally. Physically. Spiritually.
Over the years I’ve replayed the foolishness of the words I spoke in those moments of grief…Lord, if You’re here…and …I need to know you haven’t deserted me. Of course, God was there, but I was wounded and bleeding so bad I couldn’t feel His presence. No, He hadn’t deserted me, but it sure felt like He had.
In the throes of spiritual cardiac arrest, my heart and my spirit hemorrhaged despair.
God’s word says, “The Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away…” but this was new ground for me. In my troubled state of mind, her death was unfair—a loss from which I would never recover.
Grief does that, you know—causes us to think irrational thoughts and demand absurd must- haves from God if we are to survive. Had the doctors taken an x-ray of my heart, mind, and soul in that moment, they would have admitted me to ICU-Critical Care.
If you had asked, DiAne, what would it take for you to be alive, happy, and well again? I would have shot back… my daughter alive and well. Back with her family and us again.
But without my realizing and because the Spirit lives within me, even when I’m a stupid, sobbing child, He led me to do exactly what the Word of God tells us to do.
“Submit yourselves therefore to God…Draw nigh to God, and He will draw nigh to you…be afflicted, and mourn, and weep…humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He shall lift you up” (James 4:7-9 KJV).
Immediately a very different kind of breeze, the breeze of the comfort of God, physically swirled and wrapped around me in a warmth and secure love I cannot explain, kinda like that warm micro-waved blanket they wrap you in when you’re lying on a gurney in a hospital emergency room. But I understood, without a doubt, God had done exactly what I asked—let me feel His presence. And on that patio some thirteen years ago, I build an altar and worshipped Him. A holy moment in time that stands as a testimony in other times of trial and heartache I don’t understand—He is there!
I’d love to tell you, all these years later, the sorrow is gone. No, not gone. Just different. But I rejoice in the new normal that always follows those first times of utter desperation. If you trust Him to comfort, heal, and give you new hope—even when you believe you can’t move forward—He will carry you!
The question for you today is—what will it take in your time of tragedy? What is enough to move you toward help, hope and healing? Is Jesus enough? Only you can answer that question, sweet friend. Is He?
“And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away…I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely. He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son” (Revelation 21:4,6-7, KJV).