HOPE*ann*FAITH

Learning to Live , Again, On Purpose.


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I believe … [day 3]


It’s October again and time for 31 days of writing. This year I’m only linking up with my FMF sisters. Trying once again to get back to my first creative love, writing. Pen and paper, computer screen, lunch bag and envelopes! Writing is my calling, I believe 😉

Today’s Prompt:

Believe.

Go …

What do I believe? The question is really ,’who do I believe?’.

John 14:1 “Do not let your hearts be troubled. You believe in God[a]; believe also in me.

Jesus. Father God. The Holy Spirit.

These I believe The Word of God.

I also belive that most people believe “in” God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit; as if they are imaginary. I can’t remember when the ‘I believe’ became revelation to me, but knowing that I know that they are real, that the Word is alive became a revelation, but I did have that AHA moment and it was early on in my walk.

Then life got really hard and my mind tried to close up operations making those thing real questionable. Trauma does this. It began when my Don …

STOP!

It began when my Don went home to be with the LORD. I woke up 3 days later at 5 in the morning (I’ll never forget) after he left and spoke outloud to the Father. Like Abraham I reminded Him (Abraham often reminded God) that since my husband was now with Him that He was my husband, my source…my comfort (though the comfort, while there, is often even now, overwhelmed by the losses I’ve endured). It was a spontaneous conversation with God and after putting out my demands I came to realize that I could still feel Don’s love. I still felt loved. I just had to adjust to my ‘new normal’; goodness widows hate that term. Seriously all widows feel the same about that phrase.

So today I believe … I continue to simply believe as I’ve been instructed to believe –

IN FAITH I believe. Without this knowledge I would have lost the battle to retain my mind after losing Don and Shane. Sometime the battle tries to overwhelm me so I cling to THEM for dear life. THEY save me daily.

Each.And.Every.Day.

John 14:6 Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. If you really know me, you will know[b] my Father as well.  From now on, you do know him and have seen him.”

About a year ago … the mark of having lost my son for one year , I heard this song. It truly says what I believe.

I believe He is.

Thanks so much for stopping by and coming with me on this journey of mine. God bless.

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I’m sorry. I’m afraid, I can’t. [day 2].


God tells us 365 times in the Bible not to be afraid. One for each day. You would think we would be able to get this one down pat.

Go...

I’m sorry. I’m afraid I’m not there yet.

In a matter of 19 months and then in the blink of an eye my life was irrevocably changed. So how do I begin again. It’s easy, though still very painful, to look back now and see how I got here. Yet, I’m afraid I don’t know what tomorrow brings. It’s hard.

I’ve gotten to the true grieving part. The part where most of my pain is private, inward, isolated. There are several reasons I say this.

  1. Grieving, unlike her outward sister Mourning, is a heart and spirit thing. It’s done almost entirely by oneself. But God. Thank goodness for God!
  2. I grieve privately because after 3 1/2 years people wonder why I’m still grieving, and there’s noway to tell them the truth. It doesn’t end. It simply becomes apart of you.
  3. I isolate. And I believe that most widows and mothers of the deceased child isolate, even if that was not apart of who they were before the sorrows.

Stop.

During this transition, which will end with me being okay. Though many things in this new life, that I didn’t anticipate, cause me great fear (anxiety) I run to Father God and find one of His encouragements to not fear, as I work towards courageous.

Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9b

Well, I found that that five minutes lasted quite a bit. Funny how time is so much more when you live in faith. Thanks for stopping by … I hope this helps someone. If I can just help one to feel not alone I’ll be happy.

 

 


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Living Life After Death-5 Minutes @ a Time: [day 1]


It’s October again and time for 31 days of writing. This year I’m only linking up with my FMF sisters. Trying once again to get back to my first creative lote, writing. It’s been a long 3 and a half years. I only know that from looking back on it. Because it sure feels like a lifetime has passed. And actually, two lifetimes did. [insert sigh]

So … about the 5 minutes at a time. FMF =Five Minute Friday, hosted by Kate, where my sister writers and I take one day to free write, un-rushed, for 5 minutes each Friday. Throwing punctuation and grammar to the wind [quite the feat for a grammarista!]. No spell check. No corrections.

::I’m updating here to let you know that this post/page will serve as my landing page.  A landing page or table of contents page is where you, my dear readers, can find a link to each of my 31 Day writes. So down at the bottom of this, my [day 1] post I will link each of my posts for you to find easily.::

The theme for my FMF 31 Day Write is … Living Life After Death. I know that sounds daunting, right? Well, not as daunting as getting here, today from there. Where’s there you ask … that’s a tough question to answer, and yet I’ve spent 3 years feeling as though I’ve had to explain the where to justify the here and now, to some. So I will try to fill you in on my Story in five minutes!

Story is the prompt…GO!

No rush, right. [insert smile].

Three years ago my husband died from cancer after a 19-month battle. When I say battle I mean the disease’s toll on us as a family. My husband lived ,to the fullest, all but one week of those 19 months. He never gave up until he was finally called home to the Lord.

Sixteen months later my youngest son passed away due to fentanyl poisoning. He was an addict for 17 years. Another battle that took a toll on all of us as a family. He tried. He fought it in the end and things were looking up but …. STOP.

Heroin addiction is a disease and while cancer’s existence within my husband’s body wore his body down, heroin has a voice and a hunger that wears down the person’s mind while the sickness of not giving in wears down the body just as much as giving in and using the drug.

So in 16 months, my little family was cut in half. My oldest son and I move forward in faith, learning to live this life after death.

So if you’d like, I’d enjoy your company on this 31-day journey to wherever God will take us.

                                                                1. story. [you are here]

    2.  afraid 

3. believe

4. why

5. FMF – Share

6. belong

7. hope

8. comfort

9. inspire

10. how

11. door

12. FMF –

13. talk

14. ask

15. when

16. pray

17. pause

18. search

19. FMF – 

20. Audience

21. start

22. help

23. common

24. brief

25. capture

26. FMF – 

27. whole

28. song

29. together

30. voice

31. close

Thanks so much for stopping by and coming with me on this journey of mine. God bless.

1Andrea

 

 

 

 

 


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I believe.


I’m in love with two songs these days: You Say and The Way, I’ll share the videos at the end.

It been an incredible 3 years. I don’t know how I got here, seriously. But here I am and I keep waking up and showing up. It’s hard most days, and I never know when a wave of sorrow will wash over me.

I spend much of my time alone these days and I’m slowly (tortious slow) getting used to it. So it’s either tv or crochet or… I do go to church on Sundays and to Bible study on Thursday’s…these are my social life. I go to the grocery store…this is my exercise and quiet time.

But lets – (STOP for FMF). get to the prompt. Loved and the two songs. They speak to how and who I am in Christ. Just a few weeks ago I said to my loved minister/mentor that I didn’t know if I was a mature Christian. She lovingly said that I was. Yet, sometimes I continue to question where I am in faith. Enter the songs that simplified that question.

Listening to the fairly new Lauren Daigle #LaurenDaigle song, You Say #YouSay the Holy Spirit rose within me and hugged me tightly as I listened, replayed, and gain as I soaked up the love of God. We make faith so hard, putting rules and measurements on faith when it is really quite simple.

The Word says that we ARE Loved. For the sake of time, I’ll give you these scriptures to look up…it’s always better to check the Bible yourself, especially for context.

  • Zephaniah 3:17
  • Romans 5:2-5 and 5:8

This line in Daigle’s song tears me up, to actual crying:

”You say I am loved when I can’t feel a thing”

She ends of this chorus with, ”I believe… I believe what you say of me.”

You Say -Lauren Daigle

The Word tells us simply…We must believe. Believe in what Christ Jesus did for us on the cross. Jesus, The Word, is alive and we must believe this with/in faith.

I believe I am loved when I literally (still at times) don’t feel a thing.

The song #TheWay by #Housefires clears up faith for us, quite simply. The lyrics are right out of scripture, specifically John 14:6.

I have a pet peeve, while I believe we are still living in the concept of the Book of Acts, I wonder often while others think they need books outside of the Bible to know God and His plans. I’m huge on ”go to the source”. The Bible is clear and simple, though I also firmly believe one needs Bible Truth teaching church and like-minded fellowship, regularly.

Housefire’s is directly from God’s Word and it truly is Alive.

Again we are taught to believe, by faith that God is. Throughout the some are the lines, punctuated as complete.

”I believe” and ”I believe You are ”. Simple.

The Scriptures again are lovingly stitched into the entire song. I Loved this song immediately and again I play it repeatedly.

So as I join you I encourage us to seek God’s Word only through His Word, the Bible. Go to the source. And as we begin to believe more our faith grows much more.

We begin to believe we are Loved, unconditionally, no matter our circumstances.

The Way – Housefires

I pray this blessed you, my dear readers. As always, thank you for stopping by.

 


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Pain.


Have you ever experienced emotional or spiritual pain so devastating that you simply didn’t believe you could survive it?

I completely understand.

I’ve read several articles and blogs that say  essentially (paraphrased and combined) that pain is a gift [from God] that motivates. This is not biblical and it frustrates me.

The Bible says that every GOOD and Perfect thing is from God. This implies that bad and flawed things are not from God.

James 1:17 “Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.”

Pain is neither good, or is it perfect.

Pain is NOT from God, though he will use it to push us forward. It is not the pain that motivates us, it is our level of faith and trust in God that motivates us toward Him and forward in our lives on His strength.

There was another concept that I read … “The pain is in the healing”. I thought this to be unbiblical also, but when researched it became clear, expanding an understanding I already held.

God doesn’t cause the pain. However, He advises us not to be surprised by what comes against us in this world we currently reside in.

And pain definitely comes against us in this world, in many different forms. Pain can also mark us, for the good or the bad. I am not simply referring to our outward appearances but more importantly who we are at our very core. Who God created us to be.

It changes us, pain does …

there are

So He uses the pain to motivate us. However, again, it’s not to persevere or endure alone, or with out earthly companions. It is to motivate us to press into Him.

Many in the bible cried out to God for relief of pain, or to ask God why; David, Job, and even the tenacious Jeremiah. Pain was bore by Adam and Eve; in the fall. Sin brings in the pain. I recently ministered to my sister saying that sin allows painful things to occur. In our bodies, our minds and even our spirits.

Pain within our physical [body], mental or emotions [our mind/soul realm] is subject to the consequence of sin in and around our lives. That’s why Peter and Paul advise us not to feel that these things are strange. It’s a product of earthly living.

Our Spirit on the other hand is experiences pain when our body and mind take us away from God. Whether from the intensity, or the frustration, or simply weariness we forget and function within our own abilities and outside of God. And sometimes we weary because the pain continues even as we press into God.

But as Peter and Paul and God have encouraged, be courageous, do not weary, do not fear .. God is with you in the midst of your most terrible pain.

I am currently experiencing devastation within my emotions. I recently lost my beloveds; my husband and youngest son. They passed within 16 months of one another. There are day when I cry out in agony. Mornings when I hear myself refusing to be awake, loathing the thought of the pain the day would hold.

It is a constant ache that rises in unannounced waves. No rhyme or reason, just a thought or a scent, a movie scene or the scene of a happy couple or parent and child. I feel pain intermingled with jealousy when I attend family or church events. It’s terrible to feel all that knowing that bitterness and contempt are attempting to take over.

I trust in God. I have faith in God. I have the knowledge of where my beloveds are. The knowledge that God holds my every tear as He comforts me. I feel like I am fighting a never ending battle, but know in my heart that God is the one fighting and that I am simply enduring the pain and pressing into Him.

I’ve been mourning for just short of two years now. A compounded grief multiplied by both losses.

Yet …

I rise each day and move forward.

I minister to others.

I nourish entire self with God’s Word.

I sit under His annointing.

I persevere while resting beneath His wings.

I know your pain today. Grief is grief and mourning is mourning … no one’s is more than another because grief is bore out of love. We mourn only that which we cherish. Even bodily pain can be known by each of us; no one more than the other.

These are not competitions. These are our lives giving us decisions to make, sometimes in the blink of an eye, changing us deeply, marking us for eternity.

What is your pain today? How can I pray for you?

I encourage you to seek God. Cry out to Him. I can confidently promise you that even before that seeking, that cry, His full attention is on you. Desiring nothing more than to strengthen and heal you while you rest beneath His wings.

My prayers are with you today. The prayers help me to heal too. God bless. 2Andrea

 


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Deep Quiet


It’s on mornings like this, when the house is quiet and I am alone with my thoughts, that a soft sadness envelopes me.

Don’t feel sorry for me, I am not looking for attention; just sharing a part of my life with you, as we bloggers do. Don’t be burdened by the thought that you must say something kind and comforting in the comments, you don’t. There is no worldly comfort for this and I imagine there shouldn’t be. This type of pain is God’s territory.

And this process is about trusting God and the spiritual changes that come with such a significant change in one’s life.

Moving forward in one’s life after such a loss is difficult, always. Not like before when change was uncomfortable, maybe even painful and resisted; no nothing like the ease of that.

The perspective has changed.

In the quiet I experience the changes in my life both physically, tangibly and inwardly. The full human affect. They become more real, more apart of me, as I move forward to who I am without him.

He was such an integrated part of who I was, and who I am, still. Though even after only eight and a half months that seems to be fading into the background. And while that is a good sign that I am moving right along and well, there is an acute sadness that wants to be guilt.

We, no one, is who we were yesterday.With each passing moment, each morning sunrise, we are someone completely new. Our core self, our spirit, remains intact and unchanged. But the part of us made up of our morals and values – those environmental settings built into us by our parents and cultures and religions; those are changeable, those are the things that move and adjust along with us on this plane of life. The things that change about us, if we allow it.

Our minds change. Our perspectives change.

After the loss of my other half I realize that some of those environmental and family cultural things have changed. Don’t misunderstand me here, those who know me know, that I am vastly different minded than the majority of my family; and I say majority even when I have found no one amongst my siblings, cousins or extended family who is of the same mind as I am. I don’t cling to those things that families clings to; as if I would lose who I am if I didn’t cling to the fact that I am just like everyone else in my family.

Reminding me that I will not lose myself with the loss of my husband.

I trust God and with that trust comes an ever flowing change of who I am to who I am in Christ.

Of late I don’t resist change. I’ve come to know, in this time of me without him, that the old adage is absolute truth: Change is inevitable.

Not only that, but … Control. We literally have no control over this thing called our lives. Again, this is God’s territory.

If change is inevitable. If I am not who I was with him, if I am not who I was yesterday, but did nothing purposely to change me … do you see where I am going?

And so the sadness comes in. I guess to a certain extent I am different from some widows. I don’t feel guilty that I am moving forward because I don’t see that I have a choice. I am moving forward, because back is impossible. And I don’t think I realized it as impossible before I lost him.

Before I lost that vital part of who I was for the last 26 years.

A lifetime.

Time for our children to grow into adults. Time for us to be finally considering a life for just the two of us …

Now it’s just a life for me … and that’s really sad. And it’s really okay.

… All at the same time.

It’s all so very much to take in, in one sitting of quiet. Yet, it is so very simple.

So in the quiet of this morning … with my warm cup of lemon and water, I look at the day and wonder.

Who will I be today? And I feel sad that it’s just me. And I miss him. And I get up, with thoughts of him helping my heart to beat and forge into this day.

Thanks for reading. God bless.

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