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Facing the Holidays

I love the holidays…every single part of it. From the baking to the decorating to the time spent with those I love—it all brings such joy to my heart and means so much to me. But I am realizing this year that as wonderful as the holiday season is, it can also be another reminder of how life has changed forever after the loss of a loved one.

This week marks 2 months since the death of my brother. I have to say that it still doesn’t seem real and there is not a day that goes by that I don’t think about him and miss him. And tomorrow will be no exception. Especially tomorrow. We always talked on Thanksgiving morning. So I already know tomorrow will not be the same. Nothing is ever the same when you lose someone you love.

But one thing that has ministered to me in such a powerful way over these last few weeks and keeps reverberating in my mind is something that I believe God spoke into my heart on the way home from the funeral. As I looked out of the airplane window at the clouds that day and began processing all that had happened, words came spilling out of me. I quickly grabbed my iPad and typed them out as fast as I could before the moment was gone.

Once I was home, I found that sitting down at my piano and singing these words often turned my tears into thankfulness. Thankfulness that my brother no longer has any struggles but is now with Jesus and is truly happy, whole, and free. When I think of it where he is now- how could I ever want anything different for him?

So, yes, tomorrow will be different in some ways but yet the same in other ways. I will get up and spend my day with those I love and I will give thanks for SO many things- for life, for family, for health, for Jesus, and especially for the HOPE of Heaven and ALL that awaits me there.

And if like me, you have recently lost a loved one, I pray this song will encourage your heart as it has mine. I assure you I am not an avid songwriter, I’m most definitely not an accomplished pianist, and I am absolutely not a fan of being videotaped, but if this can help just one person it is worth stepping out of my comfort zone and sharing from my heart. My prayer is that God will cover hurting hearts with His comfort and strength and that He will give peace that only He can give to those facing the holidays without someone they love.

 

FREE AT LAST

It wasn’t supposed to be this way

So many dreams have slipped away

How I long to hear your voice

And I long to see your face

But in my heart I know you’re in a better place.

You’re free from the sorrow, free from the pain

Free from the hurt and free from the shame

Free from the worry, free from the past

In the arms of Jesus,

You’re free at last.

So when I’m struggling to let go

I’m gonna cling to what I know

Gone away are your struggles

You are happy and set free

And I know without a doubt

There’s no place you’d rather be.

You’re free from the sorrow, free from the pain

Free from the hurt and free from the shame

Free from the worry, free from the past

In the arms of Jesus,

You’re free at last.

I know you’re walking golden streets

And you’re sitting at His feet

He has wiped your tears away

And I know you’ve heard Him say:

You’re, free from the sorrow, free from the pain

Free from the hurt and free from the shame

Free from the worry, free from the past

In the arms of Jesus,

You’re free at last.

  • Carol Leach - Dear Paula,

    I’m just one of a long line of those whose lives you have touched in a precious and wonderful way. A few years ago, I picked you up at the airport for an Amway function and had the privilege of meeting you personally. Heartfelt thanks for all that you do to reach out, with God’s Love, to so many over and over and over again. What an encouragement you are!

    At the urging and encouragement of others, I’m currently working on a book of poetry, sifting through years of prayer journals, to glean what I can that may be of value to others. Thank you again for being one who ‘shines’ as a beacon in being willing to risk all in serving Him.

    LOSS
    Whatever things on earth there be
    That, through Your glorious, loving hand
    And abundance, come to me,
    Help me to know and understand

    To recognize and apprehend
    The groanings deeper than my heart
    Arrayed, in Love, to heal, to mend
    What darkened life has torn apart.
    (Philippians 3:13-14)

    © Carol KC Leach 12/11/2014ReplyCancel

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