Monday, November 11, 2013

Mysterious Kindness (chapter 13)

Every day, but especially today, Veterans Day here in the USA, I want our veterans and military wives and widows to know the deep respect, appreciation and honor I feel for them. A heartfelt "thank you" to each, and may you know the blessing and abundance of God's provision and grace.

From now to Thanksgiving, each weekday I'll post a short excerpt from my book along with some questions to ponder. These questions correspond with a private Facebook group I'm facilitating, and will also be helpful to book clubs and widows groups which are going through the book. Most importantly, I hope you'll benefit too. The Bible provides a light for our path, and I believe the book of Ruth was written especially for widows. Out of everything, Ruth was the best and most helpful resource for me when I was widowed.

I hope these glimpses at Ruth and
Postcards From The Widows' Path will be a source of help and strength for you. If you'd care to comment, please click the comments at the end of this post. It's always great to hear from readers. ferree


AUTHOR NOTES
Read Ruth 2:20

"When we’re cocooned in grief, a nudge of kindness might be the spark God uses to ignite the hope within."

"...How has God’s kindness taken shape in your life? You probably haven’t had a sack of barley hoisted on your table like Naomi, but maybe you remember things like unexpected gifts and cards, compliments, offers of help, or words of advice. Grief can make us ultra-aware of beauty too: a robin’s song, a dandelion blooming through a crack in a sidewalk, or the clear, innocent voice of a child. We may be surprised at the strong emotions we feel over such little things, but these are God’s messages of kindness.

Jot down ways people have been kind to you. Start with the first thing that comes to mind. Memories might take you back to the funeral or the moment your husband died, but don’t be afraid. It’s healing to revisit those scenes as you are able. Think through the days and try to remember how kind people were. Write down the little things too—coincidences, dreams and unusual events. Create a collection through your favorite media like a scrapbook, collage, video, quilt, etc.

Don’t you feel a little better and brighter already? That’s the mysterious power of kindness; it opens us to gratitude and hope..." (p. 125)

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS:
Talk about some of the unexpected kindness you've encountered on your journey down the widows path. Post them as a comment today, or send out a thank you note to the person, or a thank you prayer to God.
 
Dear God,
I long to give you sincere praise and gratitude. Open my eyes to your great and immeasurable love for me expressed by mysterious kindness I’ve received. Help me recognize how you have delivered me from the depths of my sorrow.
Amen.

3 comments:

  1. I received many acts of kindness from friends, family and church. But after a couple of weeks my friends, family and church all returned to their normal. It was then my journey was just beginning.
    About a year later I met a special lady online who took the time to visit with me and listen to my heart. During this visit she shared with me a book she had written titled (Postcards from the Widows Path) it is about her own journey of grief and sharing of her pains, sorrows and joys. This was an unexpected kindness of love and treasure.

    Another wonderful mysterious act of kindness happened after my daughter and I had moved into a new small apartment. It was one morning I just could not bring myself to get out of bed, the tears were intense and I was sobbing so hard my breathing was very shallow. It was out of no where my beautiful little feline friend (Lizzy) jumped on my bed and began licking my forehead, then she would rub her little head against mine. She did this for a couple of minutes and then I realized it was no accident, it was providence saying it's okay, and he was loving me me through this precious little 7 pound creature. It was a reassurance of his wonderful love and grace. A wonderful mysterious act of kindness. ~

    dodi

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  2. Dear Dodi,
    You're so sweet, thank you. I can only do what I do because of God's overflowing kindness to me. I wish I could do more in many ways.
    Lizzy sounds like one of those good and perfect gifts which God sends along the way. I can imagine her purring too, as she was busy taking care of you. ((hugs))

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  3. I have also received so many acts of kindness since losing my husband. One very recent one was from a a Professor who used to attend the church where my husband pastored. We met coincidentally (I believe it was ordained by God) at an event in Abuja where I now live. I had not seen her since losing my darling husband because she had concluded the programme she was running in the university in our town and returned to where se lives.

    ReplyDelete

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