Monday, April 21, 2014

The love of the Lord endures

Hello sweet Christian
I stare at the computer and wait for God to tell me something. But I hear nothing. So I play some music and hope to hear you in the words that come through the ear buds. What do I want to say? I feel like I say the same things over and over, in fact I know I do. I reread some of your letters over the past few weeks and I see the same confusion in my words. I see how mottled my thought process is, how lost I am in my emotions. Lost. That is pretty much exactly how I feel. My fingers are stationary on the keyboard for minutes at a time – I really just don’t know what to say anymore. Part of me feels like I shouldn’t be writing to you anymore. Like you have moved on to an amazing place and you keep getting these desperate letters expressing my feelings of loss and sorrow. The hurt in my heart never seems to lessen. I thought that it would. I thought that I would be “better” but instead I have discovered that I am just getting really good at pretending. Because it seems like the right thing to do. To be better. I mean come on its been almost a year and four months. I guess it is apparent now that its not going to get better. This is our life.

Instead I have decided that I just need to bide my time until we are joined together. I still remember sitting at the table with Doug and Loralie after we had both gotten the horrible news. I held Loralie’s hands across the table and asked her, “How do you live the rest of your life missing somebody?” And here I am now all this time later and I still don’t know the answer to that question. It is not supposed to be this way and yet it is. I know that I purposely put you to the back of my mind to lessen the pain but moments and memories jump at you and there is no escaping them. Today Evelyn asked me if you and her ever did an Easter egg hunt together. Then she told me that when you guys play My Little Pony together you are always the blue boy pony. Oh she misses you and she is just starting to realize it and express it.
And then there is God. It is Easter after all – even though I tried not to think about it. Because every holiday is a reminder that part of our family is gone. But here we are celebrating the resurrection of life, the reason you are in heaven right now, the reason I have hope. Without God all of this would be unbearable. I tried to describe to somebody the yesterday how God is holding us up while we walk THROUGH this valley of death. Its like my heart has been ripped open and I am in danger of bleeding to death, all of the blood and life is meant to drain from my body. And it should. Watching you die a slow death and then living without you is a surely cause for me to lay down and die. But I explained it that God has His massive hand over the bleeding, His paw is covering the gauging wound in my heart. And some blood is still trickling and seeping out the sides but for the most part my heart can still beat and I still have life. And He will hold His tremendous hand there until it has clotted enough for Him to let go. He will hold me until we walk out of this valley and begin our ascent to the top of the peak.  Christian I surely believe that God intends to use this to bring Him Glory – to show people that through Him we can survive. And thrive. I am waiting to find out what we should be doing. Where does my heart belong now? I talk about you to anyone who will listen. Then I talk about God because sure enough their first statement is, “I don’t know how you do it”. Well I don’t know either but we are.  And we have hope. Its funny that I can be so sad and melancholy yet still be full of hope. That is the great thing about hope – the thought that one day I will walk through those beautiful gates and you will run into my arms, together with Jackie, and my heart that has been fractured for so long will be whole again. That is what God does. He makes people whole again. And if it doesn’t happen until I am finally Home, that is ok. I know His hand will not leave my heart and allow me to bleed out. I believe that His glorious plan is going to be so amazing to look at in reverse. I saw that on a sign somewhere that life must be lived going forward but can only be understood in reverse. Enter faith. When nothing makes sense and there are no answers to your questions and there never will be; but you still cling to that tiny thread of hope and know that someday you will be ok.

 So I wait and hope and try to pray. I try to pray for other people, for Angelina and Chris, for their beautiful girls, Sadie and Ellie, I pray you are watching over them as well. They need to grow and heal and become strong. We saw so many miracles during your treatment I know that God can make all things new. I witnessed Him giving you back to us, even if it was just for a short season. I pray for Evelyn and her sadness and grief that has been hidden and stuffed away. She misses and loves you so much, you, her amazing big brother. I realize now when I watch her with Joshua how much of a blessing he is for our entire family. He makes Evelyn smile and Ryan is the only one so far to make him belly laugh. He is healing for them and he helps to bring newness and joy to their lives.

I miss you. But I understand that in your sweet short life, you accomplished more than some adult lives. The tasks that God set out for you, are done and your job is complete. I am trying Christian, I really am but it is so hard and it feels very lonely. Every day I think about honoring you. I get out of bed and put my feet on the floor and a smile on my face to honor you. Thank you for being such a sweet boy, for holding my face to give me kisses, for rubbing my arm when I am sad, for hugging my neck when I cry, for throwing your head back to laugh, for making your angry face when I teased you, for teaching me to fight for something I believe in, for showing me what true love looks like. You are my hero.
As I finish up this letter the song, Believe by Paul Janz comes up and the lyrics pop out at me and I know you are speaking to me,
“Believe in me, reach out with your heart, no power in the world will keep us apart. Believe in me and love will remain. Believe in your heart – love stays the same”
I love you.