My Dad served in WW II. After we visited Normandy and saw some of the area where these battles were fought in the trenches, I can better understand why he never wanted to talk about his time there.
There are some days I feel a lot like my Dad. I feel like I’m on a battlefield, fighting. Not just for my life but the life of my family.
Grief is like war. It leaves casualties behind. Bodies strewn here and there.
Grief has no respect for anyone regardless of class, social standing, race, or religion.
Grief comes at you like a sucker punch to the gut. It is not nice. It does not have manners and is not gentlemanly.
One minute you can be standing there, fine as wine. Your life seems to be back on track and running smoothly. Then out of no where – WHACK!! You find yourself flat on your back again. Has this happened to you? It has to me – more than once.
Recently, I’ve realized that sometimes the indirect hits hurt the most. Like when you realize your children are struggling with the loss. We often forget about the other family members who lost a loved one. Sibling loss is as real and devastating as child loss or spousal loss.
Just like my Dad, there are times I don’t want to talk about my grief and it’s impact on my life or family. My kids aren’t eager to talk about it either. And it can’t be forced. So what do you do when the fallout continues?
My first instinct is to run. Just like my Dad ran into the foxholes to get out of the way of the enemy, we should run, too. But in this case we should run into the arms of our Heavenly Father.
The healer. The deliverer. The One who will never leave you or forsake you. The One who will carry you during the darkest of days and the loneliest of nights.
The next thing I do is use my weapon – prayer. My faith is the only thing that has sustained me during this battle, and remember, grief IS a battle. This week I woke up at 2:30 in the morning to these words replaying over and over in my spirit (Psalm 42:8):
So when I fight I’ll fight on my knees
With my hands lifted high
Oh God the battle belongs to You
These words are from the song Battle Belongs, by Phil Wickham. I hope you’ll take a moment to listen to the rest of the song as it goes on to say:
And if You are for me
Who can be against me
For Jesus there’s nothing
Impossible for You
When all I see are the ashes
You see the beauty (thank You God)
It’s 15 months ago today that Melanie ran ahead to heaven, straight into our Father’s arms. And I’m still here, counting down the months since she left, asking, “When does the fallout end?”
Probably not until God calls me home. But until then I know I have a safe place where I can shelter.
I’m so grateful my dark days are fewer, my grief bursts less. And even though I know something will be up ahead on this windy road called Grief, which will cause me to stumble and cry out, my heart knows my Father will be there to catch me. He is especially there during the fallout – El Shaddai, The God Almighty. He is there for you, too.
Father, for all of us who are still in the battle and suffering from the fallout, I lift up each person to you today. I ask that you wrap your loving arms around each of us and let us feel your all encompassing peace and comfort. May your mercy be with us as we walk this journey and may we run, full throttle, toward you knowing you are a strong and mighty tower. Help us to fight the battle on our knees because it’s surely the place we can win this fight. There is no one like you, Lord and we trust you to continue to lift us up and fill the void in our hearts with your everlasting love and peace until we can see our loved ones again one day. Amen.