Recently a tornado ripped through a local neighborhood where we knew several families who had their homes destroyed. A few of the homes were decimated, but many others were left partially standing. There was something about seeing those homes that made me feel a strange sense of kinship with them. Since the death of my daughter, there have been many times when I felt just like those houses – not completely destroyed, but parts of me that were left broken, incapacitated, and laying in the rubble.
As I continued to watch, people began coming from near and far offering to help. Meals were brought in, chainsaws appeared to help clear the way, tarps were thrown over roofs to prevent further damage. Many opened their homes to neighbors who no longer had a home.
Looking around the rubble, it was easy to see the damage, but as the days went by I also saw something else. Help and hope for the future.
There are days when I’m so tempted to look behind me and focus on the rubble that still remains. It’s tucked up deep inside me, but still there in a corner of my heart. On some days I continue to scratch and fight my way out of that pit where the path remains rocky and treacherous. Occasionally the thought crosses my mind how it would be so much easier to give in, instead of fighting the heaviness. But, I know that’s not God’s best and it’s not how I want to live.
So, I’ve been concentrating on rebuilding. Reconstructing and restoring my heart and spirit. Day by day, moment by moment. I still wake in the early morning hours and find my Heavenly Father waiting for me. He greets me each and every day with hope for the future and reassuring me there is indeed, hope during loss. He calms my fears and soothes the ache in my heart. It’s a void that no other person can fill – only Jesus.
There isn’t a day when I don’t think of my girl, remembering her beautiful smile and warm eyes. I take her with me wherever I go. Each day I’m determined to live and do all the things she will never have the opportunity to do.
I’m standing, perhaps not as straight as I once was, but I will continue to cling on to God’s promises. “I am convinced and confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will continue to perfect and complete it until the day of Christ Jesus [the time of His return]. Phil 1:6 AMP
No matter how broken your life, Jesus is the giver of a new day. He is the God of second chances and he is a God of redemption and restoration. Only He can take your shattered pieces and recreate them into something new and beautiful. That’s the point of the cross. We can find new life and we can rise again.
Today, I hope you will find some comfort in the words to, I Have This Hope, by Tenth Avenue North:
Questions come and questions go
Was there purpose for the pain?
Did I cry these tears in vain?
I don’t want to live in fear
I want to trust that You are near
Trust Your grace can be seen
In both triumph and tragedy
I have this hope
In the depth of my soul
In the flood or the fire
You’re with me and You won’t let go