Monday, October 26, 2015

Now What Do I Do?

After the funeral when all the out-of-town relatives have gone home, once the casserole train has ceased, the flowers have wilted, dropped their petals and been tossed in the dumpster, and sympathy cards no longer pile up on the countertop---we begin to realize that the rest of the world is starting back up again---whether we join in or not.

Stop! Stop, stop, stop! Someone punch the rewind button! Let's go back a month, a year, or however long ago it was that life was good, life was "normal." Go back to that time, and then skip this nightmare!

But, no. With eyes wide open, we're here, this is life now. Can't check-out, there's no delete button, no rewind, no fast-forward. Now what?

One word: Trust

hmpphh. Some of you would like to slap me for saying that. "So trite, so trivial, so easy for me to say," you think. But I risk repeating it because it's what I heard from a widow of 10 years who has found happiness and deep contentment and fulfillment in that simple word Trust.

I heard her story tonight, and she's a thinker, she's a fighter, stubborn as all get-out, and she was sooooo angry when she came home from the hospital ten years ago that she was ready to rip the draperies off the windows!

But with joy on her face she told about clinging to God and His promises whispered to her heart. Through her despair, the exhaustion of care-giving, the challenges of widowhood, He has proven faithful and true. She trusted Him.

Here's a good explanation of trust that I copied from a sermon I once heard.
Take an inventory: 1) Do I trust God? 2) Can God trust me?
Recognize God as your source
Understand God's principles
Surrender everything to God
Trust God's promises

Trust doesn't come easily to many widows. They feel like their heart was ripped out, and who's to blame? They blame God. A man named Job and many others from Scripture also blamed God. He's in control, He's the Almighty. Yet, after all the emotional and spiritual gymnastics of weighing trusting vs. blaming, we're back to the basic word Trust.

The question is simple: Can we trust God? Sometimes the journey on the way to answering that question is very difficult. But like the widow I heard last night, trusting God's Word, believing that His promises are true, provides strength and direction along the way and makes for a journey to joy.

Now what? The first step is Trust. The next step is Trust, and the third, and the fourth. Trust in Him each step of the way. If that's too hard to imagine, just take one step at a time, one moment, one breath.

I wish you could have seen the joy on her face.
ferree

8 comments:

  1. TRUST-------The very thing I am still struggling as I come up on the 6th anniversary. Thoughts about trust go round and round in my head. These last years without my husband have been spent rebuilding my relationship with God. I have no problem trusting Him for my salvation. The problem is being able to trust that His plan for my life is good.

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  2. It's been 7 1/2 years since my widowhood adventure began and 6 1/2 years since career instability adventures started. Through it all, it has been easier to trust God than to trust people. God is perfect and never fails. Thank you for the Trust acronym, I am putting it on my wall where I will see it everyday.

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  3. Dear Anonymous - I believe that trust is one of the hardest things that widows are called to do. I understand your struggle with this issue. Sounds like you are working on strengthening your relationship with Him - continue in those steps and He will take care of the rest. Bless you dear one. Linda Lint

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  4. Michele I have found that trusting people can lead to heartache. Trusting God is sometimes difficult for me however. I like the acronym too and plan to reference it myself! Bless you!

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  5. I am now almost at month 5 since my husband passed. I have learned to trust God again by purposefully paying attention and making notes of His faithfulness in all of the everyday blessings that He shows as His love letters to me. It's not easy when everyone else gets to go back to normal life and we are never going to have our old normal again. But He is our strength, our Rock, our vital necessity. When all else crumbles around us, He can be trusted to redeem, restore, renew, refresh, rebuild, and most of all love each one of us exactly where we are at.

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  6. Thank you for this. This week marks 3 months and I'm trying so hard to maintain trust in what seems like a vast space called the future. My favorite bible verse has always been Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.
    I'm now trying to understand what does that future look like now when plans we had for our future now become plans for my future.

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  7. Thank you for this. This week marks 3 months and I'm trying so hard to maintain trust in what seems like a vast space called the future. My favorite bible verse has always been Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.
    I'm now trying to understand what does that future look like now when plans we had for our future now become plans for my future.

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  8. Thank you each for sharing your insights. They're invaluable to clarify the mysteries of faith as they touch our various paths. Honesty and faithfulness are sometimes uncomfortable walking partners, but the Lord will use them to lead us and give us that hope to which Ashleigh referred.

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