Saturday, December 31, 2011

Looking Ahead

But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 3:13,14)                                                                      As a widow, how do you respond to this verse?  Are we really supposed to FORGET about our past? Simply drop the life and love we had with our husband? Personally, I've often said, "I'll never forget. Never, never, never--I refuse!" Let me retract that-- the word "said" is an understatement--replace it with I hissed, I screamed, or I wimpered! I thought to forget would be like snuffing out a candle, diluting a perfect flavor, or ruining a beautiful blue colored shirt by washing it in hot water.
But every year, as Dec. 31 rolls around and pushes me another 365 days further from the event of my first husband's death, I see more mercy in the calendar. I can't resist the rythmn of the sun and moon, the tides and the seasons forever. New memories, new people, and new love arrives as surely as the patterns in our sky. Tides reconfigure the sand on a beach, and time reconfigures the recollections of my first husband. I will always love him. My life changed forever. But I'm no longer broken.  My mind no longer gropes for that void. My own pain has washed away and been replaced with compassion and poignant empathy for others that I never naturally posessed before.

God patiently continues to loosen my grip on what might have been. He turns my eye to a more desireable goal than numbering my regrets. He's given me a picture of eternity and my place in it--my calling "heavenward in Christ Jesus." Where will this put me 365 days from now? I wonder.
How about you?  
Rest in God this weekend, dear one, and keep your eye on the prize.
ferree



4 comments:

  1. To forget my first love is impossible,but to move ahead in the life I have now that is possible. I believe God has left me on this earth for a reason,and that reason is not just to grieve but to LIVE life to the fullest. With God's help I choose to do that as I move into 2012.

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  2. Amen Ruth & Ferree. Bless you for your God inspired words.

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  3. Ferree,

    Thank you for your beautiful words of hope! In spite of the challenging and painful places we find ourselves in our individual grief journeys, we still have so much to be thankful for; especially for our God, Who will never leave us here to fend for ourselves. We all have lots to look forward to and I couldn't agree more with Ruth's comment. Looking forward to a brighter year ahead, filled with continued healing and all the good things available to us as we Trust the Lord with our futures.

    Many thanks again for the investment of your time and gifts to bless the community created by your website. God bless you and yours in 2012!

    Love and hugs,
    Renee'

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  4. Happy New Year Ferree, I enjoyed your post today and share many of your feelings! Thank you, love and hugs, Theanne

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