Posts Tagged ‘Grief’

Lean on JESUS

JESUS My Lord and Savior

©All Rights Reserved -Anastasia Diamond

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When life is challenging (that’s every day)…lean on Jesus

When time stops on rewind, and hard memories replay…lean on Jesus

When resources are scarce, or finally run out…lean on Jesus

When hope turns to hopeless…lean on Jesus

When promises crack, and are broken…lean on Jesus

When sad songs are the melody of your life…lean on Jesus

When prayer feels impossible…lean on Jesus

When sorrow engulfs you…lean on Jesus

When tears overflow, and will not stop…lean on Jesus

When truth is made false, and lies become truth…lean on Jesus

When home is a place where there is no peace…lean on Jesus

When faith is only a distant concept…lean on Jesus

When disappointed in people, places and things…lean on Jesus

When grief is your constant companion…lean on Jesus

When friends cannot be found..lean on Jesus

When defeat is an option, and you want to give up…lean on Jesus

When loss overwhelms you…lean on Jesus

When love isn’t lovely, but tainted or worn…lean on Jesus

When abandoned, alone and forsaken…lean on Jesus

When comfort from others, leaves you still wanting…lean on Jesus

When joy is elusive…lean on Jesus

When sleep doesn’t come, in the middle of the night…lean on Jesus

When words have wounded, and cannot be taken back…lean on Jesus

When anger and rage spew like an erupting volcano…lean on Jesus

When addiction is your secret companion, destroying you life…lean on Jesus

When confusion reigns, clouding your thinking…lean on Jesus

When death is knocking on the door of your life…lean on Jesus

When evil, and false gods beckon you…lean on Jesus

When laughter depends on bad jokes, or hurtful pokes…lean on Jesus

When justice is unjust to the innocent…lean on Jesus

When suicide feels like the only way out…lean on Jesus

When family are not supportive, or far, far away…lean on Jesus

When change is unwanted, but inevitable…lean on Jesus

When envy is deep, deep green…lean on Jesus

When peace isn’t perfect…lean on Jesus

When pleasure is an empty and bottomless pit…lean on Jesus

When trouble surrounds you…lean on Jesus

When sin consumes you…lean on Jesus

When goodness, mercy and grace are foreign to you…lean on Jesus

When marriage vows break…lean on Jesus

When pain burns in every fiber of your being…lean on Jesus

When thoughts take you to dangerous places…lean on Jesus

When burdens are heavy…lean on Jesus

When communication crumbles…lean on Jesus

When wisdom departs, or wise men act foolishly…lean on Jesus

When bitterness is turning your heart to stone…lean on Jesus

When children or parents disappoint…lean on Jesus

When guidance is poor or lacking, and your path is diverted…lean on Jesus

When illness invades your body, mind, or spirit…lean on Jesus

When fear cancels all logic…lean on Jesus

When God feels like a stranger who just doesn’t care…lean on Jesus

When doubt fills your every thought…lean on Jesus

When actions cause negative consequences…lean on Jesus

When heaven feels far beyond your reach…lean on Jesus

When plans shrivel and die…lean on Jesus

When forgiveness isn’t easy, or doesn’t come at all…lean on Jesus

When you shatter and break, gather all the pieces at the foot of His cross…and lean on Jesus.

John 3:16-17

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son (Jesus), that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through Him.

All Rights Reserved ©2009-2010…”JESUS my Lord and Savior-ANASTASIA DIAMOND’S Prayerful Reflections…and Photographs on a Spiritual Journey from Darkness into HIS Light” Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from Anastasia Diamond is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided full and clear credit is given author/photographer and with appropriate and specific direction to the original content at: https://jesusmylordandsavior.wordpress.com/            Bookmark and Share

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JESUS my Lord and Savior

All Rights Reserved ©2009-2010 -Anastasia Diamond

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My Abba Father loves me yesterday, today and forever

My Daddy Died…He Can’t Wear a Tie

My earthly father died in February the year I was seven years old. The following June brought an empty Father’s Day to a little girl still mourning the loss of her daddy.  However – to my first grade teacher – making a Father’s Day tie was the scheduled class project that Friday. Everyone would make a paper tie to surprise their fathers…even me.

With mist clouding my eyes, I attempted to refuse. I stammered as I told her I just couldn’t do that – my father was gone. He went to the hospital and never came back. She looked at me with unseeing eyes and listened with unhearing ears…telling me, “Everyone must make a tie today.”

Tears welled up in my eyes that morning, as they are again…this many years later. I protested – telling her as clearly as a shy and stuttering seven-year old could: “You don’t understand, my daddy died on the operation table…he can’t wear a tie.” I will never know this woman’s heart, mind, or motivation at that moment – as she continued her stern demand that I make that tie…and without tears.

My daddy can’t wear a tie…

I Felt Defeated…and So Very Small

I felt defeated and very small, as I  chose brightly colored crayons, thought of my daddy…and made him a paper tie that he would never see or wear. A tie that he would never applaud or make me feel special for giving it to him. My best friend hugged me and told me I made the best tie –  my daddy would have loved it. I started thinking that maybe he really could see it. However, I crumpled and tore it up before that Father’s Day came and went.

It took a while for me to forgive my teacher – but I did. However, I spent many more years missing my father…knowing I would never feel the safety of his arms again.  He would never again cuddle me to him and tell me how much he loved me.

I Know My Abba Father Was There

Today, I know that my heavenly Abba Father was there while I made that paper tie – loving me through my loss, grief, frustration and anger. Today, I know that He is with me in all of my struggles on my journey. Today, I go to my Abba Father, who draws me close and tells me how much He loves me – yesterday, today, and for eternity.

HE is the Father Who Always Has Time for You

Children – you may have a great relationship with your earthly father…or that relationship may be non-existent; through death, distance,  indifference or distain. No matter what the past or present circumstance with your earthly father, please know that you have a heavenly Abba Father, the Creator of all that ever was or is…who loves you more and better than anyone else ever will, could, or would. Please look to Him for the guidance, wisdom, advice, and love you seek. He calls you and all of His children to Him. He is the Father who loves all of His children equally, yet appreciates and acknowledges each of your individual precious and unique gifts and talents. He is the Father who always has time for you.

HE is Patiently Waiting to Give You Fatherly Guidance

Fathers – love your children. Look to your heavenly Abba Father for the strength, wisdom, courage, guidance, and ability to be the man He created you to be as you parent your children. Your Father God,  His Word, and His  most Holy  Spirit will show you the way. Seek out Godly counsel when you are confused, angry and unsure. Talk with your Abba Father. Tell Him your concerns. You can tell Him everything. There are no surprises with Him. There is nothing to big or too small to share with Him.  He is patiently waiting to give you the Fatherly wisdom, guidance, and advice you seek as you parent your children.

HE Sent His Only Begotten Son to Die for You

Celebrate this Father’s Day with your Abba Father. He is waiting to hear from you. He is the Father who loves you so much…He sent Jesus, his only begotten Son to die for you…that you may live.

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All Rights Reserved ©2009-2010…”JESUS my Lord and Savior-ANASTASIA DIAMOND’S Prayerful Reflections…and Photographs on a Spiritual Journey from Darkness into HIS Light” Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from Anastasia Diamond is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided full and clear credit is given author/photographer and with appropriate and specific direction to the original content at: https://jesusmylordandsavior.wordpress.com/

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JESUS my Lord and Savior

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©All Rights Reserved-Anastasia Diamond

Come Alongside
Come Alongside

To come alongside the grieving is to be side-by-side and shoulder-to-shoulder with them.

The simple coupling of these words creates a powerful word picture of unity and solidarity; oneness and togetherness. It is a true honor and a gift to be with another human being, as they allow you to share in the darkest moments of their soul. In the span of a lifetime, each of us is granted a number of unique opportunities to experience our own grief…and  to come alongside others in their grief. Loss happens to all of us. It is unavoidable.

The natural response to loss is to grieve.

Everyone who is grieving needs some level of companionship and social support…a safe place to explore their feelings, the freedom to practice their cultural customs and rituals, and true acceptance of how they grieve…for how ever long that takes. Additionally, they need accurate information and education about the natural grieving process. This is where friends, family, counselors, pastors and others with patience and love, can come alongside the grieving…sincerely acknowledging the gravity of what they have experienced… while encouraging and supporting them through their grief in a non-threatening manner. Walking with them through their grief process, so that in time they will find the courage to acknowledge the loss, experience the pain, re-adjust to a world without whom ever or what ever they lost …and find closure in moving on and saying good-bye.

Grief after-care…

Sadly, many people do not get all of the grief after-care necessary to assist them in walking through the process in a healthy and healing manner. Therefore, though we may not know it, we meet people every day who are at various stages in the grieving process and attempting to cope with new or lingering loss issues. It is important to remember that though some losses are obviously new, there are also the forgotten grievers. Those who are still grieving a loss that may have happened years before; and long after most friends, family, and the church have all but forgotten.

Good intentions…but I don’t know what to say or do.

Most of us have good intentions, and truly desire to be encouraging and supportive when faced with a person who is grieving and mourning a loss. We just don’t know what to say, or when and how to say it. Therefore, we often stumble through; at times saying things that at best sound like a poorly written sympathy card, and at worse – we say things that hinder rather than help, and hurt instead of heal.

Who we are when we are faced with the challenges of interacting with someone who is devastated by loss speaks volumes of how we ourselves have dealt with our own loss and grief issues.

Care givers are at risk of re-opening the wounds of their own grief.

We may sincerely desire to come alongside and walk with them through the darkness and into the light. Nonetheless, every time we encounter someone who is grieving the loss of love, faith, hope, a pet, family, friendship, fellowship, marriage, a job, home, health, mother, father, husband, wife, sister, brother, or child…. We are at risk of re-opening the wound of our own grief.

Even the seasoned grief counselor will have times and circumstances that will bring tears and emotions. They could not do what they do if they stopped feeling. However, to be of value to the grieving…a grief counselor’s tears and emotions are most helpful when motivated from that place of ‘coming alongside’…not from their own unresolved grief issues.

When talking with a grieving person, we can be the most helpful if we ourselves are sincerely moving toward a place of wholeness and hope in our own grieving process. If not, our grief may spurt out and spill over; covering the tender wound in the griever’s heart with even more hopelessness and despair than when they first started. Unfortunately, this can happen when our own loss issues have not sufficiently healed. Then we too walk away disillusioned and wounded; carrying renewed feelings of loss and grief.

Coming along-side the grieving…or cleansing your own wounds?

So, you may now ask: How can I get to the place of being able to truly come alongside someone who is grieving…and leave them better than I found them?

First things first; you must do your own grief work before you can truly come alongside some one else who is grieving. Otherwise, you may not be coming alongside them at all. Instead, you may knowingly or unknowingly, be sharing in their grief only to have a forum to expose and cleanse your own wound….or to make less of their grief and make more of your own. Like a contest; comparing who has suffered more.  This is not healthy for either of you.

When you are talking with someone who is grieving while you are in the midst of your own grief, and find yourself thinking, I am the best person for you to talk to, or saying something like, “I know exactly what you’re going through”…Take a breath, and step back from the situation. Maybe you are the right person; but maybe it is not the right time. Maybe you are not quite ready yet. It truly depends on how fresh and open your own grief wound is, and how much grief work you have done at the time. You must take care of yourself before you can honestly and effectively care for another.

Doctor…is that a wound in your hand?

Perhaps this will illustrate the point. How effective would the most brilliant surgeon be if he had a gapping, bleeding wound in his hand…while operating on the gapping, bleeding wound in your hand? Granted, he has been there…he does know what you are going through; but he is not functioning at 100%.  Both his perspective and his skill have been compromised by the wound in his own hand. Untreated, his wound could infect your already injured hand and negatively affect your healing process.

As for the patient, you are anaesthetized and in no condition to protest; or even know that the surgeon is incapable of operating at the time. I think it is safe to say that if you were fully aware and had a choice, you would choose a surgeon with the experience to operate on your wound, but not one of the walking wounded himself, while he is still bleeding. However, once his hand is functioning well, this same doctor will perform hand surgeries with a deeper compassion and stark awareness of what his patients have and will experience. He will truly understand what it will take for them to function in complete wholeness again. He will be able to sincerely tell them that though their hand will be somewhat different after surgery, they will survive and be able lead a full and productive life again.

Indeed, if he shares what he learned from his own wound and healing process, he will be a better doctor; one capable of coming alongside his patients. Both they and he will benefit from his experience.

We are all much like the doctor and patient in this story. We must be ever so careful in how we care for the grieving and their wounds. We must therefore ensure that we ourselves are taken care of and understand the process before we attempt to perform an operation on another’s wounded mind, heart and/or spirit.

We must know, within our own experience, that there truly is life beyond wounds and earthly loss. Otherwise, we will offer myths, empty promises, and cliché answers that will only partially cover the pain, but not assist in their walk toward wholeness.

Finding a New Normal

People who are grieving are often anaesthetized by the pain of the loss; numb and unaware at first. Yet, they do know they are wounded. They wonder and ask…will I ever feel normal; will my life ever be the same again? The hard answer is no, your life after this loss will be different. Wait, don’t run away and hide. Different does not have to be horrible, empty and lonely; different is different. None of us can recapture time, and often the people and things grieved over may be gone from this world forever. However, we can all learn to adjust, to find enjoyment, and fulfillment in a new way of living life; and that becomes our new normal.

One of the precious gifts you are likely to receive in ministering to grieving hearts is the opportunity to assist them in finding peace, hope, faith, healing, comfort…and contentment in their new normal. You may assist them by coming along-side the grieving in their walk towards wholeness in a life without those things, circumstances and people they thought they could never live without.

Yes…it is a challenge. However, you may find deep within you – a Holy Spirit inspired well of blessed and merciful resourcefulness…just waiting to be tapped.

As you come alongside the grieving, you will have the blessed opportunity to draw them towards a renewed, fulfilled and productive life…beyond the valley of the shadow of their loss…and into a closer walk with Jesus.

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