Monday, April 29, 2019

Carrying the cross

Good morning, anniversaries can be really hard,  can't they? My friend Carrie wrote the following last year on this anniversary of her husband's home-going day... and she carries her cross with joy, still today...

April 29, 2018
Eight years has passed by with many tears and much grief, yet, God has sustained me with even more joy. When I think about how my life changed 8 years ago today...waking up on a beautiful spring morning having my day planned to go on a field trip with my daughter Quinci. 

I got the devastating phone call soon after, realizing I was a widow and would be raising my three little girls alone. My husband, their daddy was gone; in a blink of an eye, he was in heaven. 

Yet, God sustained me. Along side the Interstate crying and screaming, God sustained me. 
In my loneliness and darkest hour, God sustained me. He has never left my side one single time. 

God is still sustaining me. I woke up this morning in a much different way, next to my second husband. He's a loving and supportive man that has shared and loved me through the grief of my past. 

I am a different person than eight years ago. Life is so different now, full of much joy; yet grief is still there at times. I am loved well and because of Jesus and His healing power. I am healed and can face each day with joy. 

Joy is not simply a smile on the lips; it is peace in the heart as a result of our mind being continually kept on Christ.
April 2019
My friend Carrie had the unique privilege of being one of the people who carried this cross through the streets of her hometown. It reminds me to take up my cross too. And it reminds me of all my widow friends who each carry their own particular crosses.


  1. Maybe it's me, but I'm into 2-1/2 years of widowhood, and I have yet to discover the "new exciting" life supposedly promised to widows if they would just hang on long enough and had enough faith. Believe me - I have been trying, but all I see every day is one more day without my beloved husband at my side. I go to my church, to Bible studies, to home groups, out with my lady friends, and do not just sit home. I know every day
    hundreds of women join these desolate ranks. I am still hanging onto Jesus - realizing He is my only hope, but most days, I cannot feel His presence, only feel the coldness of my husband's absence. I've read many books on widowhood, and realize there are as many different stories, as there are different ages & personalities of those of us left behind. At my age, 68, I seriously doubt there will be another husband in my bed to wake up to, as Carrie does. Maybe I am still too angry about losing him. But all I really find to agree with here is Ferree's statement "God knows you want your old life back. He understands." He might understand, but my heart is still broken and life is dull and meaningless, especially when I see other couples enjoying each other. I didn't get my happy ending with him, just a series of lonely days & nights without him, but still hoping to join him some day when I can crawl out of this purgatory and into the light again.

    1. Hi Lovey, thank you for your honest thoughts, widowhood is one of the hardest challenges of life. It's not just you, it's reality. You are in a wilderness chapter of it right now. God respects your questions and anger. He will not trivialize them, they take a long time to work through, far longer than our culture usually approves. And I apologize if anything here holds out the carrot of a new and exiting life. Although that's possible, it's not a worthy goal for what we've been through. The joy that Carrie speaks of is much deeper. It's a place where sorrow and joy can coexist but it is hard fought, as you know because you are in the middle of the fight right now. Please keep on doing what you're doing--faith is doing the right thing even when there are no guarantees for this life. This is a season of sorrow and suffering, it's ok to hate it. But it doesn't have to last forever. Please don't hesitate to keep in contact with me.

  2. Thanks for your understanding, Ferree. Yes, I know that I am still in this desert of sorrow and barren wilderness. 3 months after my husband died, I lost my Mother and 3 months after Mom, I lost my best friend to pancreatic cancer. I feel like I was turned upside down & shaken violently onto the rocks below. I do not have any children to help blunt the pain, I just feel totally alone except, for my many pets. I feel like a 3rd or 5th wheel in terms of being in a group. But I also would not begrudge any widow who finds love again in the way of another husband. If they can find love again after the hell on earth they had to endure, God bless them. Nor would I begrudge any wife her husband. I don't want theirs - I only want mine back. He was so wonderful - everything that I needed, deep love after toxic relationships we both came from, faithfulness, understanding, humor and also a shared faith in our Jesus. I only wish I had the strong unwavering faith as he did, and he bore his health problems with such grace and strength. He taught me so much - but his body was failing, it was hard for him to even walk upstairs having COPD, and other issues. And he said if God wanted to take him, he was ready to go Home. The one good thing that has come out of my widowhood that I can see, is that I volunteered to be a leader in our church's Girl's Ministry. Who knew - me never having had kids, that I would love my "Girlies" so much. I am sure this was the Lord's direction, as I just love being with them, and they seem to love me back. Thank you for reaching out to me. And - please do not feel that I think this site is holding out a carrot (I like the way you put that) I always find something that helps. But - as you can realize, sometimes we just want to cry and snarl, and spit & scream & wail for as long as we have breath. This is by far the hardest thing any of us widows undoubtedly have had to endure. Then the rage subsides for a while, and we pick life up where we left off, with varying degrees of back to reality. When that rage of mine subsides, I remember that dream I had of Jesus about 8 months after my husband passed, at probably the worst point of my grief. He was bloodied and scarred, much like the depiction of Him in the Passion of the Christ. He looked at me and simply said. "I am with you in your suffering." I have to keep remembering that, because He is, whether I can feel Him in that moment or not..


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