Glory and Grief

fishing

Today as I headed up the road on my run, I prayed for breadcrumbs and glimpses of His glory…not just in my life but in your life too.

A minute hadn’t even gone by before I saw a deer standing by the side of the road. Yet, at that moment, it didn’t occur to me that perhaps this was a breadcrumb. It wasn’t until the second and third one crossed my path a couple of minutes later when my heart recognized it.

I’m slow sometimes, Lord. Thank you for the second chances!

I spotted seven deer on this morning’s run. Some were braver than others. Instead of darting into the bushes they would stand and stare intently as I ran by them.

Deer always remind me of this one verse in Psalm 18.

“He makes my feet like the feet of a deer; he causes me to stand on the heights.” Psalm 18:33

And when I think of Psalm 18, my mind goes back to the season in my life when my feet came back to His doorstep.  At the time, nothing else in my life was clear, only that I needed Him.

In grief, I ran away. In grief, I ran back home.

*********

Last night I read these words from Eugene Peterson’s book Leap Over a Wall.  “We don’t become mature human beings by getting lucky or cleverly circumventing loss, and certainly not by avoidance and distraction. Learn to lament. Learn this lamentation. We’re mortals, after all. We and everyone around are scheduled for death. Get used to it. Take up your cross. It prepares us and those around us for the resurrection.”

“A failure to lament is a failure to connect.”

“Lament– making the most of our loss without getting bogged down in it—is a primary way of staying in the story. God is telling this story, remember. It’s a large, capacious story. He doesn’t look kindly on our editorial deletions. But he delights in our poetry.”

I think this is why, ever since returning home, I’ve headed for the Psalms whenever I don’t know where else to turn. David grieves well. And, in doing so, shows us (reminds us) how to grieve well.

“He makes my feet like the feet of a deer; he causes me to stand on the heights.” Psalm 18:33

At this point in David’s journey, he is expressing gratitude over the greatness of God. David’s life was filled with seasons of pain, loss, despair, fear, uncertainty, and doubts. Yet through it all, David chose to turn his focus and his heart back towards the God who had created him, knew him, chose him, loved him and had rescued him over and over and over. And despite the countless reasons David certainly had to lose hope, it was this ever present Hope pointing David’s heart back toward all the reasons he had to remain and rejoice rather than doubt and despair.

God was bigger than all the grief and David knew it. David’s heart found rest here.

At times along the journey, David may have known nothing else…but he did know this. 

And that was more than enough.

“Lord I find You in the seeking
Lord I find You in the doubt
And to know You is to love you
And to know so little else
I need You
Oh how I need You

Lord I find You in the morning
Lord I seek You everyday
Let my life be for Your glory
Woven in your threads of grace”
– All Sons and Daughters

2 thoughts on “Glory and Grief

  1. Angie Howard

    Abba uses you so often to say just what I needed to hear! Thanks Eileen for being His beautiful voice and giving me a cool cup of water in such a parched land…

    Reply

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