Overwhelming Grieve... and Unspeakable Love - by Traci Carson
When I was in my early twenties I lost my four babies (three miscarriages, and one set of twins) to death by violence and stress in my home. As time moved on, I was informed by doctors that I would never be able to bear my own children. I was devastated. It was one of the coldest winters of my life. I had no desire to live. My life at that present time was meaningless without a child of my own. But as the phrase goes, "Beautiful blooms are enhanced through the coldest of winters." Spring eventually came (a new and fresh season), and there was a young boy who needed my love. My loss was his gain, and his need was the beginning of my healing. What a difference a day (or a season) makes. That was not the end of sorrow and pain, in fact throughout the years there has been tremendous loss and heart breaks that literally knocked the wind out of my sail for weeks, if not months at a time.
Most all of us could share stories that are painful and heart wrenching. As another saying goes by someone who has experienced tremendous pain and overcame, "The tears and sorrow are sacred. They speak more eloquently than ten thousand tongues. They are messengers of overwhelming grief… and unspeakable love."
A veracious and steadfast love
Years ago, in a nursing home where I would visit and pray with the elderly, I met an incredible woman of God. I loved being with her, she was pure delight to my soul. Linda would laugh and share stories that often encouraged and strengthened me. When I withdrew from her presence I aways left better than when I arrived.
To look at Linda you would definitely see a woman who was dealt a life load of lemons; however, she made the sweetest lemon-aid with all the acid pulp that was given her. She was one of the homeliest women you could meet. When you first saw her it was difficult to face what you encountered as her body was completely covered with large warts. There was not one place on her body that was vacant from the warts. In spite of her appearance, she had the warmest smile that drew you close to her side. I found myself drawn to her and could not help but hug her. She was so endearing and lovable.
Those who allowed themselves could not help but fall in love with her person. When I hugged her I hoped to receive some of her incredible attributes. She was one of the most positive and beautiful people I had ever met in my life.
This dear woman had never been kissed by anyone other than her parents, and rarely held or touched, but yet her misfortune was replaced with a veracious and steadfast love for people. She powerfully impacted all who met her.
Throughout the years I have often thought of Linda while going through difficult times, or when feeling sorry for myself. Even during those silly outward self-examination times when you wake up, look in the mirror and see another line on your face that wasn't there the day before... "Wow, so this is what my face is saying about my life... every line and scar is a story."
What is beauty? Some of the most beautiful and handsome people I know are those who were and are rejected, despised and overlooked. They were never sought after due to natural reasoning by the people around them; however, the Lord has taken a singular interest in them. He is enraptured by their inward beauty and is able to come into His garden and eat its pleasant fruits (Song.4:16). Like my friend Linda, they stand on Jesus their solid Rock, rather than the quicksand of human reception.
Knowing the Lord beyond a handshake
Recently Gary and I received a phone call from a man in his early forties who has been battling cocaine and suicide. He is handsome, extremely gifted as a musician, and blessed with family and friends who have been there for him time and again over the years. He is a Christian who has not moved beyond the outer-court experience (Jesus the Savior, out of Egypt, natural light, natural walk, new birth experience, etc.). He was introduced to Christ years ago, and received Him as His Savior, but never allowed himself to intimately know the Lord beyond the hand shake experience.
Now the reality of life is confronting him. He has hit a wall that is demanding him to face the Truth. His choice will either set him free or keep him in bondage to the entanglement of fear and torment.
The reality of life is confronting all. Whether non-believers, make-believers, or Believers, this is a time where all are being confronted with who they really are. The heat is turned up, and for those who endeavor to walk in the righteousness of Christ and receive His beautiful grace, it is a beautiful season of transformation no matter how uncomfortable it may be at times.
There are numerous untold stories of Believers who have gone through much pain, turbulence and loss, and yet they come out the other side in humbled strength and power that slaps devils hell. They have learned through the trials and error, to just “Be” in Christ where His Peace precedes Power. These “Believers” (Heb.11:6) have chosen to be “better” rather than “bitter”.
Your and my condition and circumstances do not change the Word of God. “Let God be true, but every man (flesh nature) a liar (Rom.3:4).” We must not allow anyone, ourselves included, or personal experiences to shape our lives other than Christ Himself. Often we lose sight of things by our present condition.
Don't jump ship!
There are some who have, or are about to jump ship from the situation or circumstance at hand. This means one has abandoned their post and deserted the ship. Sailors when joining a ship are required to "sign on" for the duration of the voyage. They are "bound" to the ship and ordinarily cannot leave it until the long voyage ends or the ship returns to home port. In ancient times a sailor wishing to leave without authorization would jump over the side when near to land (hopefully unnoticed) and swim for it, abandoning their post and deserting the ship. This is where the term “They jumped ship” came from.
My thoughts go to apostle Paul when he said, “I Paul, the prisoner of Christ Jesus for you Gentiles... (Eph.3:1)
I therefore the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you to walk worthy of the calling with which you were called… (Eph.4:1)
Therefore, do not be ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me His prisoner." (1 Tim.1:8)
We are not our own; we were bought at a price, and its time we bow to Him who paid the price. (1 Cor.6:20)
There are places, people, things that may attempt to hinder our spiritual walk, however, if we are patient and allow our Lord to turn these events around He will, and for the better.
"...let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance (patience) the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith... (Heb.12:1b)
There is nothing that can hold us back from the Lord’s purpose if we heed to His Word, and not stand in our own way, where everything seems to be in our way.
The Lord is speaking to you as He spoke to the man in Mark 9:23, "If you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes.” Immediately the man answered Him and said,“Lord, I believe; help my unbelief!”
Our Lord can deal with honesty. He will work unbelievable things in your and my life when we come before Him with an open and honest heart. He is the healer of the disappointed, angry, and broken hearted; however, it's our choice whether we give Him all the pieces or not.
- Traci Carson