August 22, 2008

His promises...

Okay, so the last time I wrote was at a pretty low point of my week. When I went back the next day to read it again, I realized how down I sounded. I felt bad about sharing that, but many friends assured me that it was okay, and good for me to be real about those hard times. I also got so many amazing comments, encouragements, and prayers, so I know now that it is okay to be that real.
The rest of this week has been pretty good--it really has helped to be so busy getting ready for the school year to start. I've had fun with my friends, and felt like I was doing something that I am good at. I've even found myself laughing and genuinely having a good time. It seems so weird to me to be back to a "normal" life, and I'm just constantly reminded of how much God loves me and takes care of each and every detail in my life.

I wanted to include a picture or two on my blog this week...

We ordered Jonathan's headstone last Saturday, and it should be here by the end of September. Until then, my mom surprised us with this flower arrangement to decorate his grave for now. The day before she left, she also got this precious little angel to sit on his grave as well. The day Justin and I went out to put it on, I realized that the little angel's hands were the same width and size as Jonathan's little hands were. I got to hold my sweet little boy's hand for only a little while, and it is really special to have this angel as a physical reminder of his perfect little hands! (Sorry the picture of Jonathan's little hand is kind of blurry--I wish you could see how perfect they were!) It is so peaceful going out to Babyland. Sitting there looking over all of the graves of babies 2 and under, I just feel a connection with other families that know our pain, and I find myself praying for them. Maybe someday we'll even meet some of them.

God has been teaching me and comforting me so much this week too. Every morning I've been getting up, going into Jonathan's room, sitting down in the glider, and spending time in God's word. A friend gave us an amazing year long devotional called Hope, and it has been wonderful. I have found so many verses that give me such peace, comfort, and trust in God's plan for my life. I still don't understand why losing Jonathan was part of this plan, but all I know is that God's plan is greater than mine ever could be. Jonathan's life was for an eternal purpose--so much more than I could have given him here on earth. I know that I'm growing as a person through all of this, and I know it will only help me to be a better mom when the time comes for me to have a child here on earth. I'm praying that that will be soon, but I just have to step back from my desires, again, and trust God for his perfect timing. He is going to have to give me patience!

Some verses that I connected with so much this week were in Psalms--

"I am trusting in you, O Lord, saying 'You are my God!' My future is in your hands." (31:14-15) "Wait patiently for the Lord. Be brave and courageous. Yes, wait patiently for the Lord." (27: 14) Hard for me to do!!
"He lifted me out of the pit of despair, out of the mud and the mire. He set my feet on solid ground and steadied me as I walked along. He has given me a new song to sing, a hymn of praise to our God. Many will see what he has done and be astounded. They will put their trust in the Lord." (40: 2-3) This verse was eye opening but kind of shocking for me--in my mind I couldn't believe I actually could agree with this verse, especially the first part, just 3 weeks after Jonathan died, but God has given me such a peace that I actually do! And the last part that God will actually use our tragedy to bring people to "put their trust in the Lord" absolutely humbles me. That God would trust us enough to use our lives to draw people to himself is amazing to me!

The down times will come again soon. The days that I can't stop the tears will be here many more times, I'm sure of it. But one thing I know through however I am feeling--God's promises to me are true, and I'm going to stand on them--even when I don't feel like standing! The only way to survive anything hard that comes is to lean on Jesus!


Amy (Metz) Walker said...

I post the sad stuff and I cry for and with post the encouraging stuff and I cry because I admire you so much!

Diane said...

You are so beautiful...inside and out! Psalm 37:4 says, "Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart." As you continue to seek His will, those desires will be His desires for you...I believe your desire to have a child here on earth is from Him...He is definitely at work in and through your life and Jonathan's! I love you!

Robyn Kitchings said...

I'm so glad that you are able to share your feelings through this blog. Reading it just inspires me to be a better person. To be more like you and strong in my faith. I am amazed at your courage and strength!
Love you!

Jenny Brannan said...

I love you, Al! You are so graceful, even in your sadness. I am still crying and praying for you. I'm so glad God gave you the job to help lift you a little. Psalm 27:14 helped me when I was in Africa and just learning to trust God with everything I had. It was when I surrendered to His will in that verse did he finally answer my prayer. And I know that He is still answering yours. Jesus loves you and so do I! I'm so proud to be called your friend.


Joy said...

Wow, you guys are so amazing. I can't tell you what an encouragement this post was to me that you guys are going to be ok. :-) I worry about my brother and sister-in-law. :-) We love you SO much!

Tena said...

Continue to be strong and courageous. God will be with you - as with Justin and all of us that love you.

Natali said...

I know we've never met, but I know many people who have had the privilege of knowing you and I hear wonderful things. I just wanted to tell you that you've been on my heart since I found this blog and I just didn't know quite what to say. But I do know that I will be praying for you and continued healing and I am awestruck by your grace, poise and strength.