Friday, January 31, 2014

Trauma and Grief

Another great post from Brooke about the trauma associated with grief:

"Sometimes it seems like a dream and I can't believe it was ME, that it really happened, that it was MY LIFE. And sometimes those memories are so vivid that they take my breath away and I can't believe that I ever kept going, that there was ever anything else."

The Grief and the Trauma

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

It doesn't matter

"It doesn't matter." Something I've been saying for about the last week and a half leading up to our retreat tomorrow night. I say it about everything- the laundry, the food, the messy house, the broken garage door. We have been doing this ministry long enough now to know that the month of a retreat is kind of a loss for things in our personal life. We give ourselves permission to let things slide because we know the grief that comes with tending to other people's grief.

Today as I was reflecting on whether or not that is the right thing to do-to let things go- and I felt God asking me to see it as a gift. When Caleb died everything stopped and nothing mattered. His death put everything into perspective and made me see what was really important-Heaven, Christ, Eternity and getting there so I could be with him. Doing this ministry and leading these retreats brings all that to the front again-nothing matters except Heaven, Christ, Eternity.

Tomorrow night I will minister to women who are broken, some of them fresh and raw with grief. And many of them will wish like I did in those early days that their only problems right now were dinner each night, laundry, a messy house or a broken garage door. But instead they will be in the pit of grief and well when you are there nothing matters.

Thank you Jesus for letting me know and for bringing me back to the fact that nothing matters-nothing but Heaven, You, and Eternity.

Please pray for us tomorrow night that the Holy Spirit would come and bring the healing power that is promised!

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

One week from today!

Please pass this on to anyone who is interested and lives in central Illinois. The retreat is open to all faith backgrounds.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

New Envy

Thought this was a great article and something I'm still struggling with almost 3 years out from our loss:

When a New Envy Rises

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Joy and Sorrow

In one week's time I've followed/heard about/seen pictures of the arrival of two very precious, healthy rainbow babies, been to one baby shower, and heard about/prayed for two families who lost their babies this week. Talk about emotional roller coaster! And in the quiet times that I've had, I keep coming back to the same question, "how?" How can joy and sorrow co-exist in this world? How can one family be having their happily ever after while another just begins their worst nightmare? How, How, How? The answer is -I don't know. But I'm sure that even if I had an answer it would not help me understand any better. The truth is that joy and sorrow do co-exist. Since losing Caleb I have had felt a strong calling to do ministry in the pregnancy loss vineyard. While that is something I'm pursuing, I also have a lot of joy in my life and of those around me. At last Sunday's baby shower I spent two hours "ooooing and ahhing" over the little clothes, blankets, and shoes. Then I went home and spent time writing my meditation for our upcoming retreat-on the darkness of loss and living life without your baby. Throughout it all I keep asking God "Give me the strength to do this-to keep my heart open to joy and sorrow." Because the temptation is to lean too heavy on one end of the spectrum-become a hermit and immerse myself in the baby loss community and get stuck there. Or to turn my back when I hear of tragedies and just act like life is fine and that sorrows don't really happen. But the middle road, one that embraces both the joy and sorrow is so tricky and requires strength I never thought I would need. As we approach these final two weeks until the retreat I'm going to continue to walk in the darkness of loss and it's aftermath. But there is still joy and rejecting that would be rejecting the resurrection. Father, give me strength for both, for joy and sorrow and in the meantime, a stiff drink to go along with it!