A Season of Change

changeOne windy winter day, I found myself dreaming of spring with all its shades of color. I began planning my annual flower garden in my mind, envisioning numerous species soon to border my backyard.  I visualized the beauty and I felt the warmth of a spring day and longed for a season filled with promise.The polar vortex but a memory.

What fun to dream and decide about next spring and the amazing plants to grace my yard. No matter how cold or bitter today may be, the sun will usher in new life soon.

As the 3rd anniversary of my husband’s death nears, I am sitting here writing and staring out the same window that framed his world those final 77 days. I remember thinking about winter and spring and how they parallel life.  Dave’s passing from this world to the next during winter, made me wonder what spring would be like.

Every year I find myself waiting for winter to pass and I anticipate how perfect spring will be.  This year is no different, except I have a peace I have not had for many months.  So much change surrounds us when we lose a spouse that it is overwhelming.  Even now, almost three years into this state of widowhood, I am stunned by how much my life has changed. But, by employing prayer I now live with a peace-filled heart.

I am astonished at the immense feelings associated with change. This is not how it was supposed to be. We were meant to walk into the sunset together.  We worked our entire life and planned for our senior stroll, hand-in-hand.  Alone was never part of the picture, not even close.  “For when I am weak, then I am strong.” (2 Corinthians 12:10b)

Do you find you are stronger now, as you move through life as a single?  Has the journey taught you to cope, to do things you never dreamed you would do?  Or, are you not there yet?  It is wise to recognize that where ever we find ourselves today, it is okay.  God is working and He is moving in our lives. The next time you pick up your Bible and read a passage that you were lead to read, ask yourself two questions.  “What is God saying to me today?  What am I going to do about it?

Please share what you are hearing from the LORD.  We could all use some eternal encouragement.

Sail On

ImageI mentioned in a prior post about using a WORD each month to contemplate, study and embrace. Part of this process is talking it over with God, asking for His guidance and wisdom to reveal the one word I need to study for a season.  A number of years ago my word was perseverance and you can imagine where God took me with that one.  But I am grateful I had that word during that time in my life because it helped me to see that everything worth having is worth waiting for.

Perseverance was the title of a devotion I read this morning. The text referred to Christopher Columbus and his tenacity in the face of all sorts of trouble. He and his crew encountered storms, experienced hunger, faced deprivation and extreme discouragement while sailing to find new paths to other lands.  The account of his journey, the words written in the ships log repeatedly voiced the sentiment, “Today, we sailed on.”

That is perseverance, the ability to face the storms of life, to lean into the winds of opposition and still declare, today we sailed on.  These words struck me as I prayed and wrote in my journal today, the first day of a new year; the first day of the rest of my life. This past year brought with it a major attitude adjustment for this writer.  I recognized the value of dropping to my knees in prayer.  I know that prayer works in any posture, but for me, on my knees is a visual of submission.  Total submission to God changed my life.

As a widow, each day is a different challenge, a fresh outlook with new outcomes ahead. Where are you on this journey?  How long have you been in the midst of your future without your spouse in the picture?  What are you feeling today, New Year’s Day?  Regret?  Doubt?  Fear?  I want to hear from you?  Is there something you want me to address in this blog?  Please share your thoughts with me.

Zephaniah 3:17 (NIV)  The LORD your God is with you, he is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, he will quiet you with his love, he will rejoice over you with singing.”

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Grace ‘n Grins in the New Year