Thursday, October 28, 2010

Praise You In This Storm

Yesterday was a really tough day emotionally! No particular reason, no significant day like a birthday or holiday; although last week we would have celebrated our 13th wedding anniversary. That day, I kept pretty busy and the time since has been more filled up than usual. Maybe I didn't take time enough to grieve the loss of what an anniversary represents. All I know is, I woke up feeling very blue and unable to shake it off.

I felt compelled to write some Haiku (traditional Japanese poetry) to work through my brokenness. Interesting that there would be such a contrast to my last post expounding on the power of healing in humor. I confess, smiles were in short supply yesterday.

I'm not sure what triggered this melancholy. Maybe it was the classic Corvette I saw last week with the driver who looked so much like my late husband, Buck. That made the rest of the commute to my home extra difficult!

When I finally talked myself into getting out of bed, the day was filled with powerful memories as I came upon Buck's walking stick, hiking boots, AT Handbook and what he often referred to as his compass: his small, camouflage-covered Sportsman's Bible.

As I washed the dishes in front of my kitchen window, a song came on the radio that stirred the tears again. Wanting to shake this mood, I lifted my hands to praise the Lord in spite of my heavy heart. It's hard to understand why it would make a difference. Nothing was different about my circumstances...but then again everything about my focus had changed. I had taken my emotional eyes off of myself and was looking to Him instead. That's when I finally started to feel better! There are many places in the Bible that admonish us to praise God and He always blesses obedience.

Of course, it is natural and necessary to grieve and it works toward healing, but after a time, I want to move beyond it and not get stuck there. It requires a decision and the Lord's strength to move beyond it. I look forward to the day when it is a more natural response to stop and praise my Lord, instead of getting stuck in the pain.

The journey of grief continues to be unpredictable, but I am so thankful for the closer relationship I have with the Lord now and for the spiritual growth that has taken place because of it. These are two, among many amazing gifts that have come out of the tragedy of losing my precious husband. I like to think that he would be pleased with the woman I am becoming.

I am so blessed to be able to include music videos on my blog now. This song: Praise You In This Storm by Casting Crowns has a powerful emotional impact every time I hear it. My first exposure to it was during Buck's hospitalization and it just seemed to summarize our circumstances so well; since, even in spite of all Buck went through, he never lost sight of his relationship with His Lord! It seemed fitting to consider it "our song" and then it became mine. As I searched for a copy on You Tube, I was amazed by the picture that accompanied the video. The mountain setting and the gentleman in the photo remind me so much of my Buck!

If you are going through challenging or painful circumstances, I pray this song will encourage you to PRAISE HIM!