When Grief is Great and Words Are Weak

the one thing to remember when grief is great

Today we’re saying goodbye to one of the oldest members of our family. She doesn’t wear human skin or express herself in many syllables, but she’s loved just the same.

She’s the four-legged kind. A blondie. A dear friend named Coco.

She and our other mutt brought my husband and I together thirteen years ago with their mutual love for walks and chasing furry creatures. And as they say, well, the rest is history.

Since I’m pregnant and rather hormonal the realization that our companion is dying hit me rather hard. But I believe during those hard seasons God often speaks the loudest, sometimes in the most unexpected ways.

As my husband wrapped his arms around me and my round belly this morning, I said,

“It’s amazing how God speaks to us through our animals.”

I’d been observing our two girls over the past couple of days. Our other dog, Zoe, knew something was up and her disposition had changed. She’d become more affectionate, more calm, wanting to be near us often.

One day I let both of them out on our back porch while I cleaned. After about a half hour, I peeked through the window.

Will you continue reading with me? Today I’m sharing over at Purposeful Faith about grief and how often words are weak. You can read the rest of my post here.

when grief is great and words are weak

Linking up with these communities: #ThoughtProvokingThursday

For the Discouraged Soul Who Can’t Carry the Weight

burdens

Before I had time to take my fighting stance, the enemy of my soul sat down and planted himself between me and the truth. His presence was firm. He wasn’t going anywhere.

Discouragement in every form took over my thoughts. My church, writing, friends, ministry and everything I held dear were a source of attack. Nothing was off limits.

I tried to hold onto to the words of life I knew lay planted in my soul. I remembered the Word said the enemy is a liar. I recalled verses which said no weapon formed against me would stand.

The tide was coming in and I needed a grip on solid ground. I longed to plant my feet firmly on the Rock I knew would prove stable and unmoving. I opened my Bible but nothing seemed to sink into my heart.

I saw the black and white on the page but I needed to put skin on it. I needed a real person with flesh and blood to speak life into my heart.

A few mornings passed and some friends shared prayer requests via voice text. Hearts were being opened and encouragement poured into the spaces which needed to be filled.

Should I tell them? I looked around at my home, my kids and many blessings God provided. Who was I to be discouraged? Why did I feel this way?

Giving words to my thoughts made them real. To speak them aloud gave them a life I wasn’t sure I wanted, and I hesitated for minutes, waiting and listening.

Something inside me spoke and I recognized the voice of life I’d been groping for.

We can never carry the burdens of others if we don’t release some of our own.

I spoke. I released all the thoughts of defeat and discouragement that followed me around for days upon weeks. Instantly, I felt lighter.

kites

And then, one after another, these sweet sisters of Christ spoke words of life and encouragement into my soul. They lifted me up in prayer and saw an inner strength I needed to be reminded was there.

I praised God and realized this was the body of Christ. This was the hands and feet of Christ extended, carrying my load when I couldn’t sustain it any longer.

In Galatians, Paul tells us,

Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you fulfill the law of Christ.

Galatians 6:2 NIV

As I sat listening to my friends’ voices, I saw this law fulfilled. And it wasn’t the law of Moses. It wasn’t a burdensome law which no one could uphold.

It was the law of Christ: a law where we live by the Spirit and not by the flesh. A law where love is the embodiment of every command, and we love because He first loved us. Though we are weak, we are made strong through his power.

When we lift each other up in Christ, we lift up his Holy Name.

Self-sufficiency is a lie, friends. It leads us down a path of loneliness and regret.

 If you’re struggling today, can I encourage you to reach out to someone you trust? You weren’t made to carry all of that weight on your shoulders.

When we release it and allow others to carry it, we see a little bit if Heaven here on earth.

 

*Linking up with Kelly BalarieJennifer Dukes Lee and Holley Gerth. Come join us.