Tuesday, July 27, 2010

...The Lord Is Close To The Brokenhearted-Joy

I've been on vacation the last two weeks and doing those dreaded vacation things like cleaning closets, ugh! I came across a drawer I had been avoiding cleaning that had all of my dad's medical supplies in it. I couldn't understand why we hang onto meaningless stuff when our loved one's die. I decided I was going to take it out and get rid of it. I mean it's only been a year and a half now, why haven't I done it? Well, as I pulled out the folder that his nurse had written notes in I realized why it's so hard. With each item I throw or give away it's like another part of my daddy that leaves and another memory that I may forget. I feel like I may not remember him if I get rid of all the stuff but I know this is just another part of the grieving process.

And then I realized how far I had come through this entire year and a half long process (and I'm sure it's not over) and I'm so grateful God never left me because I probably wouldn't be here if I didn't have Him to hang onto.

About five or six months after my dad's death I remember sitting in a Bible study at the Hope Center and my pastor had been doing a study with us on Fruits of the Spirit. This particular week he was teaching on Joy. I was just getting back to "enjoying" life again and this particular subject interested me. He spoke about how when we walk in the Spirit we have Joy regardless of the circumstances in our life. Sitting there listening to my pastor I became scared and nervous because I thought, "I lost my Joy after my daddy's death and I'm struggling to get it back, was I not walking int he Spirit? The day before my daddy died, my life was full of Joy and all of the sudden in an instant it was ripped right out from under me and I"m slowly getting it back I don't want lose it again".

I asked multiple questions during that study because I couldn't grasp why I had lost my Joy. I loved God and did my best to live the way I'm suppose to according to his Word and I thought I walked in the Spirit but apparently I wasn't or I wouldn't have felt this way. (That's just what the devil was trying to make me think differently) I was missing something in that Bible study and I felt more lost than before. A few people tried to explain it and I still felt lost but God is so good because you know you He always has the right answers and when we go to him he shows us exactly what we need.

When I went home and prayed about this situation the Lord brought to my memory the day I came out of the trance like state I was in from my daddy's death. It was a Monday morning two months after my dad had died and I was driving to work and all the sudden I felt myself say, "It feels so good to see the sun out today"! I even tweeted it after I said it because I was so excited. I'm pretty sure that had to be my first non mourning post on Twitter or Facebook since my daddy's death. I felt so good that day and thought finally I see some light in this dark mourning period. On that morning drive to work I reflected back on how I functioned the two months prior and was astonished at how the Lord took care of me.

I don't know if I remember much those first two months but as I looked back that morning I physically could see the Holy Spirit guiding me throughout those first two months. It was like I was standing on the outside watching my body while the Holy Spirit helped me to function each day. In my previous post I wrote that I felt soulless and like my body was a shell just functioning. I believe whole heartedly that the Holy Spirit kept me alive and moving. And I'm not talking in some psycho babble stuff you see on t.v., I'm talking about the One that Jesus said, the Father will send, the One that never leaves us and will remind us of everything that Jesus taught us. That Holy Spirit was with me, He guided me when I couldn't function physically and He reminded me, in my spirit, of everything I was taught prior to my daddy's death and I was able to make it through the darkest period of my life.

So in my prayer time, when the Lord reminded me of that particular day of reflection, I realized that what I had been looking for these months was "happiness" not Joy. Joy had never left me. The Webster's definition for joy is... emotion of great delight or happiness caused bysomething exceptionally good or satisfying... I can tell you that if I had went off of Webster's definition I wouldn't be here to write this so I'm glad that I believe what God's word says about Joy. "For the joy of the Lord is your strength." Nehemiah 8:10.

The Joy of the Lord was, is and always will be my strength and I don't have to fear I will ever lose it because I never did the first time.


  1. Wow! Candy thanks for sharing. I will be sending this to my mom. You know God uses our circumstances to speak to other people. Your circumstance is speaking volumes to the broken hearted. Your testimony will help so many. So glad you decided to blog it.

  2. thanks and feel free to share it with whoever you feel it can help.

  3. Candy,
    Your post was sent to me by a dear friend. I gave birth to a son 3 weeks ago today. We shared life with him for 40 minutes. Not sure how i'm supposed to feel or how this grieving process is supposed to go. I feel like a roller coaster at times and at times i feel good and in control b/c i know he is in a better place. The need to fill that "void" is so strong. Your personal experience has helped the "lost" like me. We don't know why we we're given him and then taken away, but he has already touched so many lives in so many different ways. thanks for sharing.
    shantel j

  4. Shantel,
    First let me say I'm so sorry for your loss. I can't even imagine what the loss of a child must feel like. I'm so glad and honored that you were able to read this and I hope that you were able to read my other blogs as well that dealt with multiple areas of grief. I remember a great friend of mine told me, "the pain feels like it won't go away now, but it does go away and gets easier". I will be praying for you and you hang on, talk to Jesus, talk to your trusted friends, and cry when you want regardless of who's around or what's going on. Don't hold it inside. The more you talk about the more free you are. With time God will heal your wounds. Jesus died on the cross not just for our broken bones but also our broken hearts and he wants to heal yours too. If you ever need something feel free to email me. God bless