Monday, March 26, 2012

Cleaning the Closet

My spring break ended last night.  For some it was probably not the best, because it rained every day until Saturday.  I kind of like rain, though, so it wasn't such a bummer for me.  I worked really hard on projects around the house, since I couldn't get outside anyway.  I moved into this house 2 1/2 years ago,  but some stuff just got shoved into the back of a closet where it sat undisturbed until last week.  I am pleased with my efforts;  In addition to reorganizing the spare room closet, I went through everything in my bedroom closet.  I knew I had too much stuff, and I really felt God was saying to reduce by half the amount of stuff I had crammed in there.  I had a decent-sized pile when I was done, which I took to charity.  At least someone will benefit from my gluttony in the area of purses, shoes, and clothes.

If it ended with the stuff to give away, that would be great, but it didn't.  From the start, I knew I wouldn't get away with simply giving away some clothes.  While that did need to be done, there was more in that closet than an excess of clothing.  Way at the back, there were boxes of crafting supplies, some books, and some boxes labeled "memorabilia." I knew deep down inside that I had to go through those things, and I was dreading it.  I managed to go through the craft supplies and books quickly, and found I wasn't as attached to those things as I had been at one time.  I was feeling pretty good; knocking this chore out.

The memorabilia, though, was a different story.  There were so many emotions surrounding these things, it was really hard to sort through.  I went through a couple of boxes of childhood keepsakes from my childhood and from my kids' childhoods, as well as a box of things I found when I cleaned out my mother's apartment after she died.  I smiled at some things; I cried at others.  I mostly cried, though.  My mother died 16 years ago, and I still miss her.  When she started having some dementia a couple of years before she died, it broke my heart.  I watched her slowly slip away by degrees.  I grieved over losing the part of her that was dying before she was gone.  She stopped laughing with me over our inside, family jokes, like the light that was in her eyes--but only when she was sitting up in her cot and looking straight at it--when her, my dad, and my brother and I went camping one summer when I was a teenager.  See--it's not funny to you. Literally, you had to be there.  I'm the only one left out of those that "get it."

I also had to cope with the pain of losing the one person who loved me no matter what. I know she did, even though she only said those words to me once that I remember, and once in a birthday card, which I found in the keepsake box. She was an awesome woman of God and an intercessor; and I'm sure she prayed for me and my kids every day.  I know without a doubt she could be trusted to never tell something if I told her not to.  She was the most loyal person I have ever known, and a faithful friend.  She was always on my side, always believed in me, and was crazy about my kids.  She was my best friend, and I mourned deeply at her passing. She died suddenly of a heart attack, following my brother's death 3 months earlier.  It wasn't a good year for me.

I guess it's a depressing blog, isn't it? It took me several days to write it, and I debated about posting it. It is one of the most personal glimpses into my heart I have had the nerve to put on here.  I finally decided I would;  I needed to tell someone. Writing it out helps me to process it and let the pain go. After 16 years, it was time.

There is a bright side to all this.  I try to end on a positive note when I blog.  It is my hope that someone can be encouraged by reading about my struggles, because I have hope; all of us in the human race do.  Even though I am technically an orphan, I am not alone.  None of us who have put our trust in Jesus as our Savior are ever really alone.  The Bible says, "Even if my father and mother abandon me, the Lord will hold me close." Psalm 27:10 NLT. Even though I've lost my mom and dad, been through a divorce, and all my kids have moved quite a distance away, I am really never alone, because Jesus is with me always.  Put your trust in my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, and you will never be alone, either.


"The righteous cry out, and the LORD hears them; he delivers them from all their troubles. The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. The righteous person may have many troubles, but the LORD delivers him from them all." 
Psalm 34:17-19 NIV.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Hold Me, Jesus

This is a blog post from back in 2009, three years ago.  I wrote this when I was still using facebook's notes feature to blog.  For some reason, I came across it tonight and I feel I need to share it.  While I'm in a different place than I was that night 3 years ago, I still cry out to Jesus to hold me on a regular basis. I don't think I'll ever be to the place where I don't need to be held. I'm not sure we are supposed to be totally self-sufficient.  We need God; He designed us that way.  And He wants us so much, much more than we need Him. I guess I'll never fully understand why He loves me, but I know He does. He told us "cast your cares on Him, for He cares for you" (1 Peter 5:7). I know He delights in me and longs for me to come to Him. 

April 2009--It's hard to put into words sometimes, even for me. I am a person of words; somewhat of a writer and yet words fail me tonight. Even if I could express it, of course I wouldn't post it for all the world to see. I wouldn't post even this, but I have come to know from experience that when these times come, God pours into me for me to share. I don't have the right to not share what He so generously gives to bind up my wounded heart. Believe me, I am a private person; I don't bare my heart like this unless I have been directed by the Holy Spirit. So I hesitantly let you have a peek into my pain in hopes that you will be encouraged to hold on to my savior Jesus. " The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit." (Psalm 34:18) Let Him hold you; let Him bind up your wounds. He loves you. 

The closest I can come to expressing the depth of what I feel was written in a song by one of the greatest songwriters who ever lived: Rich Mullins. He summed it up like this:

Well, sometimes my life just don't make sense at all

When the mountains look so big
And my faith just seems so small

So hold me Jesus, 'cause I'm shaking like a leaf

You have been King of my glory
Won't You be my Prince of Peace

And I wake up in the night and feel the dark

It's so hot inside my soul
I swear there must be blisters on my heart

So hold me Jesus, 'cause I'm shaking like a leaf

You have been King of my glory
Won't You be my Prince of Peace

Surrender don't come natural to me

I'd rather fight You for something I don't really want
Than to take what You give that I need
And I've beat my head against so many walls
Now I'm falling down, I'm falling on my knees

And this Salvation Army band is playing this hymn

And Your grace rings out so deep
It makes my resistance seem so thin

I'm singing hold me Jesus, 'cause I'm shaking like a leaf

You have been King of my glory
Won't You be my Prince of Peace

You have been King of my glory

Won't You be my Prince of Peace

Copyright 1993 - Edward Grant, Inc.
Words and music by Rich Mullins