The whirlwind of the past few weeks have been some that I would rather forget. There have been highs and extreme lows. It would be easy to assume that everything was against me, that God really had decided this time to abandon me and leave us to get on with things by myself.
I’d like to think that I was the of person that can deal with one bad thing at a time. November was tough. Although we were warned that mum would die, it still came as a shock when it finally happened. We were able to make a deliberate attempt to make memories, share experiences and say goodbye. It was a precious time, which I am grateful for. If there is any regret it is that I didn’t start making them earlier.
I was determined that I wouldn’t make the same mistake with Dad. I was going to spend more time with him. Not only because it was the right thing to do, but because I wanted to. Whilst I knew he was special, he was so humble about it I didn’t notice it often enough.
I think that death is something we don’t talk about enough. Perhaps the reason is that we anticipate the pain that the event causes and push it to the side so we don’t have to deal with it at all. The problem is, it is the one event that will affect us all at one time or another.
I have had to face it twice in the past seven months, and I have to say it hurts. The pain of the loss, of the missed opportunities, of the lost chances to say things gnaws away at you to the point that you feel one more thing may tip you over the edge. That edge is unknown, I think that is the very thing that keeps you from tipping over it.
Yet in the pain there are signs that God was present in each situation. I’m not suggesting that God orchestrated either of them, just that He showed that He was there, that He understood and that He was weeping with me. There is of course precedent for this. When Jesus went to the tomb of His good friend Lazarus, even though He knew what the final outcome of the visit would be , He wept. He was moved by the situation, of the pain that the family were feeling. He cared.
I have no doubt that Jesus does the same over my pain.
I also have no doubt that He will continue to care, continue to weep when I do, continue to support me, and to give me advice when I need it.
The advantage of being a Christian is that you have another Father in place. While I don’t blame my earthly dad for leaving at all, it is a huge comfort to know that I have another Father that will never leave me. His everlasting arms are there to hold me.
My job is simply to lean back into them and allow them to support me. I know that in time I will be ready to stand again.
But for now it is sufficient just to rest. So that’s what I intend to do.