Last week, I shared with you my desire to feature more hope-filled guest posts. I would love to share your journey of hope here on The Scenic Route.
This week, it is my pleasure to have Matt Patterson visiting. I met Matt several months ago through a mutual blogging friend.
Take a moment to read the words on Matt’s heart today. And in the comments, please leave Matt a warm welcome! I have a copy of My Emily to give away for free to one lucky commenter. The winner will by announced on May 1st. You can also purchase a copy of My Emily here. Thank you, Matt, for sharing with us today!
Someone Needs To Hear
If either of them falls down, one can help the other up. But pity anyone who falls and has no one to help them up. (Ecclesiastes 4:10 NIV)
* * * *
I have to say my story is not original.
It’s happened many times to many others.
Countless numbers have similar stories to tell. For some, it’s hard to share grief, pain and despair.
It was for me.
Today, there are times it still is.
I look back at where My Emily originated and nearly 20 years later, I sit here amazed. I wrote a newspaper column that initially served as my emotional release and it has since become my ministry.
My little book has created a passionate desire within me to share a story, help others with a testimony and hopefully bring others to the conclusion that in our darkest of times God does love us and He is in control.
I am of the belief that there is a purpose behind our pain. Identify that purpose.
Pray and ask for God’s help.
Plead for it.
Ponder over it and again, drop to your knees and petition for help in pointing you in the direction as to how you can help others.
Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. (1 Peter 5:7 NIV)
* * * *
(From My Emily, Epilogue)
So many moments during Emily’s life, treatment and death brought countless gifts. Included in these are patience, faith, strength, persistence, endurance, fellowship and character.
Incidents in our lives – big or small – develop our character. The Bible says, “We know that these troubles produce patience. And patience produces character.”
Our lives, as short as they may be, are a test. And one of the biggest tests we can endure is how we respond to those moments when we don’t feel the presence of God in our lives. I believe deeply that one of God’s greatest gifts is to teach us there is a purpose behind every single one of our trials or problems.
Treat them as a gift, an opportunity to move forward and draw closer to God. Problems often times compel us to look to God and count on him, rather than ourselves.
In Psalms, it says Jesus offers himself as the light in our darkness. It’s my prayer you learn to have faith and trust that God can lift you in your times of peril and save those moments as gifts.
* * * *
It took me nearly two decades to come to a realization that our story – Emily’s story – can help others.
You have an opportunity to do the same.
It’s my hope and prayer that those of you out there who have endured grief and pain are ready to step forward and share.
There are many waiting – to hear just from you.
Matt Patterson is the author of My Emily and an award-winning writer, editor and communications professional. His two-plus decades of experience include public and media relations, as well as print and broadcast journalism. He volunteers his time to helping organizations and charities dedicated to assisting families with children who have special needs or those battling pediatric cancers. He resides in Arizona.