The middle of the night.
Darkness - dark thoughts.
Why? If only? What could have been...
Whispers....to a partner who holds, and listens and probes and accepts.
It had been dealt with long ago...but here it is again.
The death of a parent and then later that of a spouse. And the emptiness that followed and follows still sometimes - even 40 years later.
And in bas relief the ever deeper realization of what was lost and never could happen...the love that could have been known but was taken away. The encouragement that could have been given but was consumed - spent - fighting a losing battle with cancer.
...and there is a sense of scar within and ache.
How can I respond?
Here are a few ideas.
of who I am and where I am - rather than resigning and giving up...and going into a life stall.
Acceptance means the end of endless "whys"...and the beginning of "now whats." Acceptance means turning mental energies towards the present and future rather than the past. Conducting an honest assessment of gifts and graces, of talents and challenges....ups and downs. acceptance for me is undergirded by the fact that I believe each of us are specially made with a plan that goes with the design. That part is God's deal.
of how the loss has deepened the gifts of life and the ability to pass it on to others. What is happening on the good days? What am I learning?....and how am I growing? And if I were to imagine the best possible future, what would it begin to look like? (Someone who knows you best might have some things to say that help.)
doing what can be done now to make up for the ache.
Like loving those around me - caring for them, listening to them, camping near them...doing what expresses love to them. Forgiving them when they fall short of my expectations and keeping short accounts on my failures...and theirs. "Do to others what you would have them do to you."
If I sometimes feel stalled, at least I can do something to head in the right direction.
And most of all
having a long and thorough conversation with Jesus about it all.
Purposefully telling Him that I am needing His help with the night.
And healing with the aches and scars.
It's the middle of the day now.
The sun is shining brightly and cool breezes are in the air.
And inside of me there is enough light - to share this openly with you.
Jesus - "light of the world" - has helped me again with the night.
For the night I describe was last night.
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(Read more about light in the Bible, The Gospel of John, Chapters 1,2,3)