This week is a week of anniversaries.
This week in June 2012, I flew back to Arizona and saw my dad for the first time since his life-altering stroke. It was an alteration that would include paralysis and full time care. He passed away 9 months ago, after over 4 years of bed-ridden living.
This week in June 2013 also marks the four year anniversary of my mother-in-law’s passing. My family and I had just recently moved back to my husband’s home state of Georgia and we were able to spend time by her side in her final days here on earth. Even though it was a time filled with heartache, I am thankful the Lord had brought us to Georgia “for such a time as this.” Some times you can see acts of love from the Lord even when life as you know it and understand it seems to be falling apart.
This is what I hold onto: The undeniable beauty in the midst of undeniable sorrow.
This week in June 2015 marks the two year anniversary of coming on staff at Rock Bridge Community Church. It’s the same church my husband and I visited prior to moving to Georgia when by husband was in Georgia during Easter week of 2013. I walked out of that Easter service and had this overwhelming rush of beauty and anticipation wash over me.
What if this is where we end up calling home, Lord? What if?
I’ve thought about these anniversaries quite a bit this week. I’ve cried tears of joy and I’ve cried tears of sorrow.
Last night I was at church helping with our First Wednesday dinner. Every first Wednesday of the month, we come together as a church for dinner, worship, fellowship, praise, prayer, and communion. After I finished cleaning up from the dinner, I walked into the service as the worship band played a familiar tune, This Is Amazing Grace. If you’ve followed this blog for any length of time, you know how much this song means to me. It’s the song that has been a part of this chapter in my life from the day I left North Carolina. It’s the song that reminds me of the Lord’s faithfulness and His promise to never leave me. It’s the song that reminds me of His undeserved grace and redemptive love. He was with me then. He is with me now. And, He promises to go before me too.
I read this is my new devotional this morning. It pretty much sums it up.
“Worthy are you, our Lord and God,
to receive glory and honor and power,
for you created all things,
and by your will they existed and were created.” Revelation 4:11
“Close your eyes and remember your first pangs of love. Remember your awe at the beauty of my world.
Remember when you stood as a child by the morning banks of the river and saw the mists dance, when you leaned over the tenement balcony and heard sweet laughter from your neighbor. Remember when you watched stars rise over the desert, so bright you thought each must be the sun of another world. Remember when a song first made you weep. Remember when you realized how truly you loved someone because you had lost them. Remember when you saw the face of your friend and knew you would die for them, when the garden your mom planted flourished with poppies and when your grandfather put you on his knee and told you the story of your brave pilgrim family.
Remember when you saw Jesus clearly and knew that a single day with him was worth your life.
I remember, Lord. It nearly makes me weep.”
The Listening Day – By Paul Pastor
I never want to stop remembering. Remembering brings my heart back to its true home. Remembering helps to keep me on the road to beautiful.