This piece is called "Good." It represents God's creation as depicted in Genesis. A dear friend's husband bought it for her on their fiftieth anniversary. It has brought me much joy to know that she had it!
That dear friend died this week. She lost her fight with cancer and went to join her Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. I have no doubts that this beautiful sister in Christ is out of pain and praising our God.
It is the third significant loss I have faced in 2015. Most of you know about our 2 year old granddaughter's tragic death in February. And in March one of my mother's sisters passed away completely unexpectedly.
At this time, between my husband and me, we have one aunt, one uncle, and one parent suffering from a terminal illness. One is in hospice care. One is continuing to do well. And one is failing at home. Blessedly, each of these ailing family members is a Christian, which gives me hope of being with them again. But it still sometimes feels overwhelming...
I know I'm not alone. I hear people talk about their losses. Sometimes multiple losses. I know people who have lost many more loved ones than I have at this point. And I know that I will lose more as time goes on.
So how do we, as Christians, process these losses? How do we face a future without our child(ren), without our grandchild(ren), without our parent(s), without our sibling(s)? It seems so bleak to be left behind.
Our hope is in You, Oh God. In You. (Psalm 39:7) Even our nations put their hope in Jesus Christ! (Matthew 12:21) "Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for He who promised is faithful."(Hebrews 10:23)
The key is in that last Scripture: "...for He who promised is faithful." Not US. He who promised. Our Lord, Jesus Christ. We can depend on Him. We can hope in Him. We can be assured that what He promises is true.
So on these days when we feel overwhelmed by loss (or potential loss), let us hold tightly to He-who-promised. To Jesus. Emmanuel. God with us.
We are not alone. We will never be alone. He walks with us. To that we cling in times like these.