Tuesday, April 28, 2009

just sad

What a sorry post title but it's how I feel today.

I just feel sad.

I'm not without hope for the future...

I'm not without love for the moment...

I'm just sad.

Sad that someone I love can get cancer and die, and I can't do one thing about it.

Sad that cancer still has the power to stike a family twice.

This world is so full of hurts, disappointments, pain, and grief.

Today I'm sad that I know first hand how brief life really is...

My heartfelt prayer: Dear Jesus, When are You coming? My soul longs for Your return. My soul cries out "how much longer, Lord?" What a conflict I find my soul in... my heart is longing to be complete in Your presence, yet... my soul weeps for those who still don't know You. Strengthen me for Your work today. Renew my hope for today. Love, Jennifer

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Happy Birthday

Today is my 31st birthday!

I woke this morning with Claudia pressing her little button nose to mine, her sweet breath on my cheek and whispering "happy birthday, mommy." It was so tender, I couldn't keep a stray from tear escaping.

Today hope flows through my heart, I know that somewhere in heaven my mom knows that today is April 18th. This is the first birthday of mine that she's been in heaven instead of here...

I don't doubt that today she remembers and is smiling and most likely thanking our creator for LIFE!

My heartfelt prayer: Dear Jesus, Thank you for my life. How can I ever express my joy that You thought of me, that You made me. That You created me to know You! Thank you!

Jesus, here is a question that You know the answer to: How can there be love without choice? You have given me the gift of life and not only life but eternal life and so today on my birthday I have a gift for You! Today, to show my love I choose You! And not only do I say I love You, but I desire to show You this love by a choice.

Today I take a piece of my flesh, my earthly desires and I nail it to Your cross! You know my innermost heart and soul, I don't even have to speak out loud what those fleshy desires are. With the power of You love, I turn and face You.

My heart and soul LONGS for You. I have so little to give, so little to offer. I am so frail, so weak, but what I do have is a heart that is beating for You.

I invite You in to my day, and smile knowing You are by my side holding my hand and delighting in my gift! Love, Jennifer

Monday, April 06, 2009

Where have I been?

I'm sorry I've just disappeared!

April has been very busy. I've been preparing for VBS, and working on Sunday school stuff. Plus the daily doings of a busy household with small children.

Now I'm in Tampa with Javier and the kids. My dad got married to Wanda on Friday. We arrived late Wednesday night in Tampa and on Thursday before the wedding we drove to Brandon and met Wanda and Paige, her four year old granddaughter.

I wondered how I would feel seeing my dad and Wanda together for the first time. You know what? It felt completely natural. I knew I would like Wanda but I just wondered how it would feel to see them together. There is something about Wanda that is comforting, warm, and a calming love you can feel.

There is much I want to share about the wedding, but I will have to come back later and write more.

Saturday we went to Jacksonville and went to my dad and now Wanda's home.

Dread filled my heart. I didn't want to go inside, but running away solves nothing. What else can one do but push forward? What was I dreading, you might wonder. Honestly, it had nothing to do with the changes. Simply put, that doesn't bother me. It had nothing to do with Wanda. It feels comforting and right that she is there. It was only about the fact that my mother wasn't going to be opening the door, waiting for me.

It was HARD. Harder than I thought to be there. Had I not had two small children and a husband there with me, I would have jumped in the car and driven straight to my mom's grave. Every fiber of my being wanted to fling myself on her grave and dig her out, screaming, "you're not supposed to be dead to us. Don't you know you're supposed to be in your house?"

I've never felt so angry about her being gone, her spirit so far away, so untouchable in heaven. I wanted her home. Greeting us in her kitchen. I could see her smile, imagine what she would say and do.

There were many bitter, angry and depressed tears. I haven't grieved like that before. I know where my mom is, my heart is set on the place where she is, my eyes focused on the goal of one day getting there myself. But Saturday's tears boiled down to pity.

I don't regret those tears or letting myself grieve like that. I know God understands and gave me the space to just simply be human.

But you know what, one can't stay in that frame of mind long. It's a dangerous, dark place that pity, depression and anger leads you. They beckon with their cold, sharp tentacles. Desperate to wrap pity around one's mind and it's a horrible trap.

Thank God for His mercy and LOVE that are stronger... that are more powerful... and more wonderful than one can imagine. Thank God for His HOPE that is fresh... that flows like river... that fills your heart and gives life!

Sunday was a new day and I woke feeling... released, renewed and refreshed. Ready for a bright new future. Worship at Southside Assembly was wonderful! I went with Jesus by my side and praised my God just steps away from where my mother's coffin once held her earthly shell. I raised my hands in VICTORY because death didn't win! Through Jesus, there is eternal life. I smiled knowing in heaven my mom was dancing along with me! I felt like I was smiling with her, knowing a wonderful secret!

My heartfelt prayer: Dear Jesus, I thank you for being so close beside me this week. Thank you for allowing me to grieve and release my anger and hurt. Thank you for allowing me to be myself and still loving me despite that! Thank you for taking care of my mother, for giving her such a wonderful place to be, in heaven and in your presence. Thank you for the gift that is Wanda. I see her for the beautiful treasure she is, and I stand in awe of your blessing to our family. Simply put I love you, Jesus. Love, Jennifer