I'm not really sure where to start on this blog, all I know is that God is pressing upon my heart to write...out loud. I write a lot, it is a passion of mine, a hobby so to speak. Some days there are thoughts that stay behind closed doors within the privacy of my journal and then there are other days (like today) when it is something that needs to be said out loud to share with the world.
In Romans 5:2-5, Paul writes, "And we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us."
I have held onto, grasped, even clinged onto this verse with all that I have over the last few months. I have used it to not only encourage myself, but to encourage others as well. It is so beautiful and accurate and helps to make sense of even the darkest moments. I heard of two dear friends this week who have lost someone close to their hearts recently and it continues to change my perspective on my current season of life. I've been in such a funk that I wasn't even sure that God could snap me out of it...my faith was waining. But then when I hear about others, when I realize I've been so self focused instead of others focused my perspective changes. I start to look at all the simple/little things that bring so much joy to my heart instead of focusing on what has brought so much pain. The hope starts to shine through once again...
"Hope has a way of turning it's face to you just when you least expect it
you walk in a room you look out a window and something there leaves you breathless
you say to yourself it's been a while since I felt this but it feels like it might be hope"
~ Sara Groves "It Might Be Hope"
This chorus comes from a song that I've only recently heard in the last few months. It leaves such a vision of what I know God has for me. It leaves something deep in my heart, a reminder that I have not been forgotten or left behind. I share all this with you, all these random mumblings as I know there are others struggling...I've talked to them. There is hope and sometimes it takes believing in what is unseen, in dreaming big and laughing even when it hurts so much.
I leave with you tonight a list of what God has blessed me with, what He has reminded me of so much when all I want to do is hide away...I encourage you to make a list, and post it somewhere you'll see it and read it everyday...there is a light at the end of the tunnel and joy in the midst of pain.
The laughter and curiousity of a 2-year-old child, the joy and awareness of all that is new to a 1-year-old, the memory of a joyful baby boy and the joy of a miracle in the making. A career and a desire growing larger everyday. A burning passion to step outside of my comfort zone, to be used by the Lord to share what He has shared with me. An endless amount of questions because there is the knowledge of something more...beyond what is seen. Trusting, having faith that what has been placed in my heart will come to pass at the right time, in the right season. Knowing that with Him, nothing is impossible. Believing that what I have inside me is contagious, it's just a matter of overcoming fear and having a willingness to share. Knowing that He has planted in me a desire to dream BIG and to love with a never-ending and BIG LOVE!
Sunday, November 2, 2008
"And we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance, perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us." ~ Romans 5:2-5
This is a verse that my family and I have held tightly onto over the last 7 months, since the unexpected loss of my nephew, Billy. God has revealed so much of himself through the grieving process and as of yesterday the hope is starting to shine through. Yesterday, November 1, 2008 what would have been William Thomas Darnell, Jr's (Billy) 1st birthday became the day that his mommy and daddy, Cheryl and Bill Darnell launched their foundation in remembrance of his short life. Little Billy's SIDS Support can be found at www.littlebilly.org. This foundation developed from the unexpected and tragic loss of Billy at 5 months on March 29, 2008. As my family has worked through the grieving process there comes the realization that we are not the only ones that have suffered the loss of a little one to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). There are countless families who do not get the opportunity to say good-bye to their sweet baby for the only sign of this unexplainable syndrome is death.
Cheryl and Bill Darnell, through their grief and love for their son, have developed Little Billy's SIDS Support as a way to help other families who suffer the same kind of pain. This foundation exists to help with the financial demands that come with losing a child to SIDS (hospital bills, funeral costs, burial costs, etc), as well as giving families a connection to other families who have suffered the same kind of loss, connections to grief counseling/ministry, etc.
This is a cause very near and dear to my heart. Billy was not only my sister's son, but he was my nephew...one of my boys. I do hope if you do nothing else you will visit the website and read more about what this foundation is doing to help others, and maybe consider (if you are able) contributing in some way.
Cristyn : )