Wednesday, June 11, 2014

The Key to Getting Through Father's Day

For the last two days we've received good advice, wisdom and examples from widows on getting through Father's Day this year. I've really appreciated their priceless insights and willingness to share their experiences and I know that if you follow some of their examples Father's Day will go so much better than you'd originally hoped.

Undergirding all the advice though is the plain and unspoken reality: we can plan everything out in the greatest of detail and intend to cover every nuance of emotion we might face---but in the end, only God gives peace. So let me wrap up this topic with this crucially important guidance from God's Word in Philippians 4:6-9 (NIV, italics and my paraphrase added):

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation on Father's Day, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving for the life and loves you still have, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthythink about such things. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.

Let's put these words into practice today.
Make a list of these things in your life, and along with your plans for Father's Day, think on these things:
What does God say is true about your life? ____________________
What are the pure gifts around you? __________________
What is lovely? __________________
What is admirable? _______________________
What is excellent? ____________________
What can you praise God for this year? ______________________

Think about these things, and notice the last phrase of the Scripture selection---the God of peace will be with you.

With love and prayers for you and yours,
ferree

16 comments:

  1. My name is Robin. My husband went to heaven on March 1 2014. This is still ver fresh for me. Our anniversary was a month later on April 4th. Then was Easter. Followed by mothers day. Now today in my birthday followed by fathers day on Sunday. July 1st is our sons birthday. Then my husbands birthday would've been August 6th. Everything is back to back. This is so hard. I'm only 32 and a widow,now raising 2 boys 11 and 3. I'm struggling daily and need Godly words of encouragement. Everything I I thought God had for me has been ripped away. Please send words to help. I feel like I'll never be normal. I feel like I'm drowning.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Robin, I am a recent widow too. I understand how you feel! God is still in the captain's seat, in spite of how it feels to us (as if our lives are spinning out of control.) There is a special group of Christian ladies on Facebook in a private group called "Lifeboat" that have been a great support to me, and they have even let me vent over the past few months since my dear hubby died. A godsend to me...feel free to request to join, and I know it will be a help to you as much as it has been to me! (((HUGS))) Cathy

      Delete
    2. Oh Robin I'm so sorry you have to deal with all this. My husband passed a yr prior and I got hit back to back. Within wks was my birthday then two wks his birthday two weeks our anniversary then fathers day. I couldn't imagine taking care of little ones along with that. We are praying for you. Please come to lifeboat. Its a secret group and you don't have to even talk you can read if that's what you want. I needed it and was the best thing for me. There is understanding and love there. Praying for you Robin. Lord Jesus help our sister

      Delete
    3. Daddy God, I lift Robin to You. How well I know the feelings she is experiencing! How grateful I am to You that You have carried me when I was unable to walk this dark, fearful road! I pray that You would be very near to Robin, that she would feel your arms cradling her, that she would recognize her tears flowing down your cheeks and know that she is not alone! Let her know too that others are, this very moment understanding and lifting her before the Throne of Grace! Encourage her, lift her up, carry her through this storm! Thank You for Your love! Thank You for Your ever presence, even when we cannot feel You for the pain! Thank You for Your work in Robin's and all our lives! Thank you that You are especially in love with widows and orphans! Thank You for answered prayer!

      Delete
    4. We are praying for you. Please join lifeboat it got me through when I thought I would drown

      Delete
    5. Robin, I am so sorry that you are going through this unwanted journey just know that you are not alone. My husband went to be with the Lord on Jan. 9th of this year and though I miss him every minute of every day I cling to the Lord and His promises. He is always with us and will never leave us. Even though there are time when we don't feel Him with us we need to remember He is here. God lead me to Lifeboat in March and it has been such a blessing to me. I pray you will come aboard and find comfort, support and blessings from a lot of wonderful women who know your pain. You will be in my prayers. Brenda

      Delete
    6. Dearest Robin, Partly there are no words to make your world right or "normal" again. Your husband's death has forever changed so much of your life and you personally...you will likely never be the same. Yet that doesn't mean you will not be okay. It doesn't mean you will drown. It means you will be different. How that different can ever be "good" is far beyond your ability to see...at least it was for me at three months after my husband's death. It was a comfort somehow to hear of other's whose plight seemed "worse..." Misery wanted to be "out-done..." I knew in my head that I wasn't alone and that there were others out there facing similar struggles and worse...but I still felt so alone. If it helps you, know that you are not alone. I was suddenly widowed at 34 with six children developmentally aged seven and under. I NEVER expected anything other than raising my special needs/special diet family alone. Yet God works miracles, and I am remarried. That is certainly not the path He provides for everyone, but it isn't as impossible as it might seem. You will be able to breathe again without suffocating. Someday. One day, one hour, one minute at a time for you and your precious children. God speed. Rhonda Menze Herman

      Delete
  2. Dear Robin, help is on the way! Not in my words, but through my prayer and everyone else's who sees your post. I will also have my Lifeboat groups praying for you. They are all widows too, many with young children like yours, and they know what it's like. Please feel free to comment, email me or message me on Facebook anytime. The Lifeboat groups on Facebook are free and perfect for widows who feel like they're drowning.
    Lord Jesus, Please rescue this young widow and lift her up today, her birthday. Her life and dreams are broken and torn. Somehow or other let her know that You know, and that You are near her. Sometimes You seem so far away and we are too beaten down to see any good. Yet, a glimmer here and there of hope, a simple act of kindness can begin the second chance she has at life. Freshen her spirit with Your mercy and faithfulness. Restore everything. Please. Lord, life hurts, but You heal. Begin today and bless her with hope and surprising joy in You. In Your Name and for Your sake, I pray this for Robin and her boys, Amen
    Robin, I have no other way to contact you, so please stay in touch and we'll walk through this together. God loves you and although these events one right after another are overwhelming, He will not let this destroy you.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Dearest Robin my heart hurts so much for you and your dear children. Three years ago when I found this blog and then joined Lifeboat I also felt as if I were drowning and no one understood. During these three years I have found support and understanding beyond description as part of this fellowship of "sisters in sorrow". We stand ready to welcome you and offer you the same support. It will be my honor to pray for you as you begin this journey - and it is a journey. Yes, a most difficult one indeed. However, as the days go forward you will find yourself taking one step at a time - in the beginning they will be slow, painful steps and many days you will feel that you cannot move forward - and that is perfectly alright for God Himself gives this promise in Isaiah 40:11 He guides His flock and gently leads those ewes with young. Jesus is right there beside you dear sister - so very, very close. I promise I will be praying for you daily and have just now asked God to bring your name to mind when you need an extra boost of prayer support. Please do continue to correspond here or directly with Ferree. We all understand the need for support and are so ready and willing to offer it to you.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I am hurting really bad today too Robin, I understand the pain of everything being ripped away.... please know the widows/sisters in Lifeboat love, care, understand, and truly is a lifeboat.... seek as out. seek out Ferree and stay in touch. We are here for you as Christ's ambassadors and your sister in this journey. Your birthday could be the beginning of finding your way back to shore and solid ground by allowing us the priviledge to gather around you and hold you up in prayer, words of encouragement, and scripture, allowing you to be real and vent, ask questions.....I have found no other place that has met my many needs in this journey as I have in Lifeboat. YOU are loved....you ARE loved....you are LOVED! nancy j.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Robin, I am a widow with 4 children and so understand and know something of what you are going through. Been a young widow and bringing up our children alone is not something we even imagined we would ever be doing. Having so many anniversaries and birthdays so close as you have, is so very hard. Cry out to the Lord dear sister. On the days when I felt I couldn't go any further, I cried out to the Lord and said to Him that it's too hard, and He reached down and picked me up and carried me through. Surround yourself with those who care and are there for you. I also recommend you get in touch with Feree Bowman Hardy who set up Lifeboat. This was a lifesaver for me early in my grief & loss. You will be in my prayers.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Dear Robin, God is with you and your children. It may not seem so now, but someday you will come to know this for sure. In my worst moments after some of the shock wore off and during the raw, pain waves of grief that would wash hard and constant, my faith was greatly tested. Satan comes to you at this time, your lowest trial, and confuses all you thought you knew. Keep your faith through prayer, sharing with this group of understanding widows, GriefShare.org (perhaps in time), and know God loves you and the children so very much. Your husband and their daddy are in the arms of Jesus and in your hearts forever.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Robin, your pain is still so raw, but the God of all creation will help you find your way, keep your eyes on Him. When you are ready join the Lifeboat group. It is an amazing group of widows in different stages of grief, all willing to listen, but most importantly pray! I too have so many special days back to back, it can be overwhelming. Being able to share the pain of those days with others who have been there has been a true blessing. Prayers for you Robin as you go through all these firsts without your husband. The Lifeboat is waiting for you to climb aboard.

    ReplyDelete
  8. dianne in indianaJune 11, 2014 at 7:57 PM

    Dear Robin, I lost my husband last june 17, 6 more days will be a year !! He was diagnosed with stage four bladder cancer on may 17 and passed away only a month later on june 17, happened so fast we did not have any warning!! Our 49th wedding anniversary was on June 20--the day of his visitation at funeral home!! so hard then fathers day--two of our three children's b-days the next few months later, I could so on but I am sharing this the encourage you to hold onto the Lord--only he can get us through, what helped me the most was taking one day at a time!!! Ask God to help you to do that, he will answer, and it will get better and different, oh my heart is still so sad some days but not everyday like at first, when I think of him my heart hurts because he was such a loving husband and father and friend-- you miss them so but you will see how much God will strengthen you, he is so close even when on some days it doesn't feel that way, but he is-- know we all are praying for you and your beautiful children--God is in control and he is our anchor, I bought myself an anchor necklace necklace and earrings and everytime I look at them it gives me peace and comfort , the is the anchor, that holds, we love you and know how you are feeling, I have found only other widows truly know our feelings and it helps for much to know they are there and to talk to them will help you dear--

    ReplyDelete
  9. You ARE loved, Sweetie. Our feeble minds cannot grasp the whys of God's mighty plans. Someday we will know and understand......saying, "Aw.....it makes perfect sense now". I'm 3 years into this widowhood journey, grown son, new grand baby, and much older than you, BUT our loves and losses and heartaches are the same. We each carry our specific burdens and what feels like intolerable pain from loss and emptiness and the unknowing future, BUT know that our loving God and blessed Savior never leaves us. He knows our next steps and will not lead us wrong. We have only to trust and conjure up faith blindly asking and knowing HE will provide peace and comfort only HE can provide. We simply must put our Hope in Him. Your children will feel this peace and comfort as you do. They will someday understand, too. But today....take life literally one hour at a time. Try not to look around the corners too seriously. Ask God to line up your steps in this world to follow His Plan and try not to worry. It's a hard journey. But we are here, too, with you. You are not alone on this mean 'ole earth. We just have to wait. Our time on is not finished. I'm listening to our (mine and my beloveds) music this evening and reveling in memories. Percy Sledge, would you believe? Told you I'm old! But all our hearts remain young -always. God is Love. And He knows our pain and our heartaches. Try to rely on Him. HE NEVER LEAVES US......NEVER LEAVES YOU, NEVER LEAVES YOUR PRECIOUS CHILDREN. Nobody wanted to board This ship, but we didn't have a choice. I am praying for you and yours, Robin. You are going to be okay. We as Christians are going to reunite one day, none of this pain is going to matter! Try to look to good things and God's LovYou ARE loved, Sweetie. Our feeble minds cannot grasp the whys of God's mighty plans. Someday we will know and understand......saying, "Aw.....it makes perfect sense now". I'm 3 years into this widowhood journey, grown son, new grand baby, and much older than you, BUT our loves and losses and heartaches are the same. We each carry our specific burdens and what feels like intolerable pain from loss and emptiness and the unknowing future, BUT know that our loving God and blessed Savior never leaves us. He knows our next steps and will not lead us wrong. We have only to trust and conjure up faith blindly asking and knowing HE will provide peace and comfort only HE can provide. We simply must put our Hope in Him. Your children will feel this peace and comfort as you do. They will someday understand, too. But today....take life literally one hour at a time. Try not to look around the corners too seriously. Ask God to line up your steps in this world to follow His Plan and try not to worry. It's a hard journey. But we are here, too, with you. You are not alone on this mean 'ole earth. We just have to wait. Our time on is not finished. I'm listening to our (mine and my beloveds) music this evening and reveling in memories. Percy Sledge, would you believe? Told you I'm old! But all our hearts remain young -always. God is Love. And He knows our pain and our heartaches. Try to rely on Him. HE NEVER LEAVES US......NEVER LEAVES YOU, NEVER LEAVES YOUR PRECIOUS CHILDREN. Nobody wanted to board This ship, but we didn't have a choice. I am praying for you and yours, Robin. You are going to be okay. We as Christians are going to reunite one day, none of this pain is going to matter! Try to look to good things and God's Love

    ReplyDelete
  10. Dear Robin, my heart goes out to you. You are in my thoughts and prayers. Like you said your loss and grief is still so fresh and you are so young. With all the anniversaries, birthdays and celebrations it is difficult. However, God says He'll never leave you nor forsake you and though you feel like your drowning i know God will keep you floating I know this because he has done the same for me. My darling husband went to be with the Lord 31st March,2014 a week to my 43rd birthday which was the same day as Easter Sunday there were also certain events happening around that time for my family and I thought I would drown but the Lord kept me and He will keep you dear sister.Isaiah 43:2 ' when you pass through waters, I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they will not over-flow thee: when though walkest through the fire thou shalt not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon thee'

    ReplyDelete

Thank you for taking the time to comment. I am not always able to reply but your remarks mean a lot to me and will appear as soon as possible.

Here are some tips for commenting:
Remember to click the Publish button.
Choosing the anonymous identity is easiest if you do not have your own blog.
Using a computer rather than a cell phone seems to work better. Thanks again!