I took this picture of the sunset the night my father passed away. I saw heaven open up and rejoice in receiving a good and faithful servant. 9/27/2014
“Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”-1 Thessalonians 5:16-18*
September is a bittersweet month for me. My two sons and granddaughter were born in this month and it is also the month I lost my father four years ago. Not a day goes by where I see or hear something which makes me think about him.
Because we are given the capacity to love, we are also burdened by grieve when we lose a loved one. It doesn’t matter who it is when death robs us of our daily comforts, it is brutal and sometimes debilitating.
But, I have hope.
Because of my faith, I know I will be reunited one day with my loved ones who have gone before me. I have hope in what God has promised me as a Christ follower and know what waits for me. And because of this hope, I give Him praises in all my circumstances.
Praise God in the great times, the bad times, and the unbearable times. Where grief can hold me under indefinitely, He is the buoy of hope which will keep me afloat for one more hour and one more day.
This is why I give God the glory in all my life events. He covers me in peace, comfort, and gives me rest when I am so weary and worn out from grieving. He also reminds me there is a much bigger plan than my little world and I need to recognize I am not in control.
He is, forever.
I wrote this about my dad’s death a few years ago. It reminds me of how fragile life is and how thankful I should be in experiencing love, bearing the scars of loss, and comforting others in their grief.
My family had gathered at my parents’ house while my dad was slowly leaving this earth for his permanent home with Jesus. As the minutes ticked away, I sat there watching his labored breathing and thinking Lord please take him now, he has suffered enough. As I prayed, a voice whispered in my head, “Give thanks in all circumstances”. I immediately changed my prayer from take him home, to thank you for allowing me these last quiet moments with my father. I was in awe at how I could change my prayer, my desire, and feel the love of Jesus fill my heart.
It is way too easy to plug along in life and when something terrific happens, we throw up our hands and PTL (praise the Lord!), and then when tragedy falls on us, we pray fervently for a better outcome. God wants us to praise Him and give thanks in ALL circumstances.
We have to practice this on the good, the bad, and the extremely ugly.
It is easier to send up praise when I did not get the promotion at work because I know God would open another door. It is another concern when my father was terminally ill and giving God the glory to have loved and known him as my dad.
Not simple, not easy, but necessary. I remind myself this world is temporary, along with the relationships, material items, money, entertainment, and food, to be enjoyed in the now but not forever. I have to set my eyes on my future, where I will eternally dwell in the house of the Lord with my loved ones and forever live in peace. All experiences here on earth mold and shape me for my future endeavors, and it is my faith and hope in God’s word which reminds me there will be something more beautiful waiting for me.
* The Holy Bible, New International Version Copyright 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society